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UK latest country to mobilise drones to control coronavirus

The Sun newspaper reports that Northamptonshire Police will use drones to spy on coronavirus lawbreakers and enforce the lockdown. The Force says it will use eight to help prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Linked to speakers and operated by trained police officers on the ground, the craft will instruct people to go indoors if they are breaking the lockdown laws. This new approach, police say, will help officers combat the spread of the virus.

Inspector Mark Holland, who is leading the scheme for Northants Police, said: “Giving our officers better access to drones means they are able to quickly take control and respond to any given situation.” Eight officers have already learned how to pilot them and associated equipment, including thermal imaging binoculars, at a cost of £135,000.

Nick Adderley, chief constable of Northamptonshire Police, added: “What is becoming really clear is that the public appetite for information is insatiable and this would be a good and cost effective way to do it.”

Meanwhile, Belgium began employing drones this week in the city of Brussels. The unmanned craft operated by local police are reminding people, out and about, to remain within social distancing guidelines.

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