Drones could play a key role in stopping what many say will be a surge in illegal immigrations following Britain’s recent exit vote from the European Union.
Recent news reports reveal that Eurotunnel, the company that manages and operates the Channel Tunnel between Britain and France, will deploy drones to watch for migrants illegally entering Britain via the Chunnel in a desperate attempt to enter the country before the Brexit mandate goes into effect.
The company – in cooperation with British police — already flies two camera-equipped drones to patrol the Corquelles train terminal at the mouth of the Chunnel and plans to add several more on both ends.
“[Brexit] could generate an additional new migrant pressure, in order for such people, desperately, to reach the UK before Brexit is enforced,” Eurotunnel chief Jacques Gounon told the British Press Association. “I do think and I’m afraid that we could have an increased migrant pressure during this summer, as a Brexit consequence.”
British Prime Minister David Cameron predicted Brexit could lead to “the end of British border checks in Calais, with nothing to stop thousands of people crossing the Channel overnight.”
The deployment is yet another example of early and vigorous drone adoption by British law enforcement.
According to recent reports, “two thirds of fire services in the UK and half of police forces are now using drones or are planning to.” Wales and England are leading the way and many agencies use drone training companies such as Sky-Futures to earn their wings for public service. The drone inspection service and UAV firm has trained more than 10 public-safety agencies over the past nine months.
In March, police in Warwickshire and West Mercia departments embarked on a six-month, police-drone partnership, deploying UAV teams to view traffic accidents, pursue a car-theft suspect and search for a missing person. In Cambridgeshire, police have launched a trial drone deployment of several 3DR quadcopters along with partner forces in Hertfordshire and Bedfordshire. The drones will be deployed for “armed sieges, road crash investigations, airport security, missing persons searches and the surveillance of the outside of buildings.