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NOPD Holds Public Meeting to Discuss Implementation of Drone Technology

by NOPD Public Affairs

November 29, 2023

Categories: Announcement, Videos

Topics: Announcement, Modernizing Policing, Transparency

NOTE: While the announced public input period for this program was posted through December 1, 2023, the NOPD continues to welcome public input on all aspects of its policy.

On November 28, 2023, the NOPD hosted a public information event at its Training & Education Academy to discuss plans to begin using Small Unmanned Aircraft System technology (sUAS), commonly referred to as drone technology, to assist the agency as both a force multiplier and a crime-fighting tool.

The informational portion of the meeting can be viewed in the above player.

sUAS technology would be utilized by the NOPD for uses such as grid searches, weather events, disaster response, accident reconstruction and more, thereby allowing for scenes to be cleared quicker and free up officers who can respond to other emergency scenes. This new, cutting-edge technology will only be deployed in certain scenarios and serve as a more efficient, cost-effective, and safer alternative to documenting scenes, while simultaneously capturing images and aerial documentation that present a true and accurate representation of the scene for investigators.

The department also continues to seek public input as policy for use of this technology is being drafted. The public input period for soliciting community feedback on the draft policy runs through Friday, December 1, 2023.

The draft policy can be viewed at Community feedback can be emailed to

The sUAS draft policy is being constructed with input from both the Department of Justice and from the Federal Consent Decree Monitors.

The sUAS program will help the NOPD to gather crucial information as situations unfold without putting officers at risk and lessening harm and danger to civilian bystanders and other involved parties. SUAS technology will be a tool that NOPD can deploy in select circumstances to help keep those who live, work, and visit New Orleans safe, and enhance officer safety.

All flights will be conducted in accordance with Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) regulations as well as NOPD policies and procedures. The newly acquired sUAS will be used by NOPD officers who have received training on FAA regulations related to unmanned flight and are licensed pilots in the operation of sUAS. 

The NOPD fully respects the privacy rights of all New Orleans residents and visitors. With this in mind, sUAS will not be utilized for any purpose not outlined in NOPD policies and procedures.