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Company looking to test autonomous Chinese drones in northern BC

January 31, 2024  By Tom Summer, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Alaska Highway News

The City of Dawson Creek has received a letter from Judy Xie, founder of Aero Future Canada, who’s partnered with EHang Intelligent Technology Co. Ltd. to conduct test flights in of drones in northern BC.

She explained that their Passenger Autonomous Aerial Vehicles (AAVs) are designed for transporting food and other goods, have urban and forest firefighting capabilities, and could be used for medical emergency response.

“Given the need for this type of technology in Canada, particularly in remote and Indigenous communities that need reliable access to goods and the current need for firefighting capabilities, we have contacted Transport Canada to obtain special certification to begin testing these vehicles in Canada,” Xie explains.

“We would like the opportunity to speak to you directly about these vehicles, to discuss how they can be of service and the possibility of having them tested within your community,” she added.


Council moved to invite the company to meet and present about the drones, though Dawson Creek Mayor Darcy Dober noted that the letter was rather generic.

“I don’t know what the benefit would be to having them come, besides, you know, having some more information,” he said. “But also creating staff time to reach out, I don’t what the benefit would be to the community.”

Coun. Kyle MacDonald said maybe Aero Future would be interested in renting space from the local airport, and using that as a home base to conduct their test flights.

“I think it’s worth a listen to, just to see and be open to it,” he said.

News from © Canadian Press Enterprises Inc., 2023


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