Edmonton's Air One keeping criminals at bay

Metro News
September 30, 2013
By Metro News
Sept. 30, 2013, Edmonton - A high-speed, city-wide car chase Monday night that led to 69 charges against three people could have been made worse, but Edmonton Police are crediting their eye in the sky, Air One, with keeping people safe.

EPS said the criminal flight, which lasted over an hour and saw the vehicle run red lights and reach speeds over 100 km/h, could have been much more dangerous.

“At certain speeds, ground units no longer give chase, and when a suspect doesn’t think they’re being pursued, they tend to slow down,” said Const. Chris Anderson, an EPS Tactical Flight Officer.

Boasting a 98.9 per cent apprehension rate, Air One also works with RCMP in outlying areas and to find missing children or Alzheimer’s patients. As well, the helicopter works proactively in high-crime areas, looking for suspicious activities from its aerial vantage point.

Air One is also able to work in darkness thanks to a FLIR (Forward Looking Infra-Red) which measures differences in surface temperatures—cars, colours, people, movement—all visible on the on-board computer.

“It’s a co-ordinated approach between air and ground.  We’re an invaluable resource that helps insure safety for public and police,” said Anderson.

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