On the evening of August 13-14, 2021, an Elistair Orion 2 unmanned aerial vehicle flew continuously for six hours over the Guns N’ Roses concert to ensure the safety of the 14,000 fans.
Police at the University of Montana’s Washington Grizzly Stadium had access to a persistent aerial view of the stadium and surrounding area, streamed directly from Orion’s electro-optic and infrared sensors. This dual-sensor payload, combined with the 24h flight endurance of the Orion, meant that the system could carry out an uninterrupted, day into night mission without the need to land.
Deployed by CloudCover on the roof of a building near the stadium, the drone provided the command post with a permanent view of the stadium grounds, entry and exit points, sales areas, parking lot, and hiking trails on the mountains surrounding the University of Montana campus.
Local police, university police, and state troopers were on hand to spot individuals in distress and identify any suspicious behaviour in or near the stadium within a three-mile radius.
Brad Giffin, University of Montana, Chief of Police:
“By using CloudCover services flying Elistair tethered drones, I was able to gain a significant advantage in keeping people safe at a large event. The imagery provided by CloudCover enabled a huge increase in my situational awareness, the ability to witness events first-hand as an Incident Commander, and to provide assistance to my officers if needed without having to rely simply on radio voice communications.”
Finally, once the concert was over, the Orion 2, equipped with its infrared camera, ensured the smooth exit of fans and employees and located groups of people hiding in the stadium to evacuate them.
During the 6-hour operation, the Orion 2 provided crucial support to the emergency services, who could rely on the drone’s continuous flight time to maintain an overwatch of the area and ensure effective coordination.
Richard Simpson, Cloud Cover Co-Founder, Mission Commander:
“Elistair’s tethered products provide an incredible capability for event security staff by providing the endurance for the duration of an event with the aerial perspective of the entire event area.”