The Cecil County Sheriff’s Office SUAS (small unmanned aircraft systems) flies in support of the following operations: situational awareness, search and rescue, tactical deployments, aerial visual perspectives for crowd control and traffic incident management, temporary perimeter security, crime scene documentation, collision scene documentation, and disaster response.
The Sheriff’s Office currently has 6 personnel with remote pilot licenses under the FAA’s Small Unmanned Aircraft Rule (Part 107). Three additional deputies are in training to obtain their license.
Additionally, the Sheriff’s Office has 2 certificates of waiver granted by the FAA. The first waiver is the ability to enter into Aberdeen Proving Grounds class E airspace which borders a limited amount of the west end of the county (2017-ESA-737-P107) – at or below 400 feet AGL and under the jurisdiction of the KAPG control tower. The second waiver allows for nighttime operations under 14 CFR, part 107.29.
The Sheriff’s Office currently operates 5 drones. One drone is to specifically support indoor operations, with the other 4 designed for outdoor flights. The Sheriff’s Office SUAS also have low light cameras, along with FLIR (Forward Looking Infrared), or thermal capabilities. This allows the Sheriff’s Office to search for persons or objects giving off a heat signature during low light or nighttime conditions.
For additional information on the Sheriff's Office SUAS Program, please view the 2018 Annual Report