Friday, December 15, 2006

Robots Join Rescue Effort

Rescue workers have brought in flying drones to help locate hikers lost near the summit of Mount Hood in Oregon.

A Colorado non-profit organization, Alliance for Robot-Assisted Crisis Assessment and Response, ARACAR, has joined the search efforts for the lost mountaneers. ARACAR brings 18 inch flying surveyors with visible light and heat sensing eyes. They can be operated from up to six miles.
Rescue teams had hoped that the remote flyers would be able to search even with the continuing bad weather that has kept them penned in at lower altitude camps.
As of yesterday the weather was still too severe even for the robots.

The ARACAR team joins the efforts of Eugene Mountain Rescue, the 10th Special Forces Search and Rescue team , the Hood River Crag Rats, Corvallis Search and Rescue and the U.S. Air Force's 304th Rescue Squadron.

Also, a cell phone signal was detected a few days earlier so eavesdropping experts have been called in. The cell company, the FBI and a government funded spy company out of North Carolina, Iomax USA, have been mustered to try to pinpoint the location of the hikers' phone.

It is believed that one of the hikers is injured near the summit. Two others in the party were thought to have gone for help and could be anywhere on the mountain. Search

More on ARACAR from Rocky Mountain News.


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