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Eyes in the Sky: Townsville’s New Crime-Fighting Asset Takes Flight

Eyes in the Sky: Townsville's New Crime-Fighting Asset Takes Flight
Image courtesy of statements.qld.gov.au

Sky Guardians Unveiled

Premier Steven Miles, Police Minister Mark Ryan, and local MPs Scott Stewart, Aaron Harper, and Les Walker officially launched Queensland’s newest POLAIR helicopter in Townsville, heralding a new era in crime prevention and law enforcement in North Queensland.

Enhancing Community Safety

The POLAIR helicopter, aptly dubbed the ‘eye in the sky,’ is now operational in North Queensland, providing an invaluable aerial perspective to law enforcement efforts.

The EC135 twin-engine helicopter boasts a high-tech camera system with infrared capabilities, moving map functionality, and advanced vehicle tracking, aiding police in tracking stolen vehicles, apprehending offenders, and locating missing persons.

Swift Response Time

With the ability to traverse Townsville in just seven minutes, the helicopter ensures a rapid response to incidents on the ground. Onboard, a pilot, camera operator, and police observer collaborate to support ground crews effectively.

The procurement process for a permanent POLAIR capability in Townsville is already underway, demonstrating a commitment to long-term investment in community safety.

Technological Advancements

The helicopter’s cutting-edge technology, developed in collaboration with Air Services Australia and air traffic control experts, allows for regular use within Townsville’s busy airspace. 

The government’s investment of $13.3 million in digitally encrypted police radio services further ensures the security of police operations, both in the air and on the ground.

Backing the Police Force

Premier Steven Miles emphasised the government’s dedication to equipping the police force with the necessary tools to combat crime effectively.

Police Minister Mark Ryan echoed this sentiment, applauding the quick response to the Queensland Police Service’s request for POLAIR capabilities in North Queensland.

Operational Success Stories

Already proving its worth, the POLAIR helicopter played a crucial role in locating a missing child and aiding in the swift arrest of a 25-year-old man in Garbutt.

The helicopter’s live stream capabilities and advanced optics, including infrared and searchlights, provide frontline police with enhanced situational awareness and valuable video evidence for prosecuting offenders.

Community Support

Local MPs Scott Stewart, Aaron Harper, and Les Walker expressed their pride in supporting community safety and providing law enforcement with the necessary resources.

Townsville has already witnessed outstanding results in the short time since the helicopter’s deployment, showcasing the positive impact of this technological addition to the Queensland Police Service’s capabilities.

In the ever-evolving landscape of modern policing, Townsville takes a significant step forward with the introduction of this aerial crime-fighting asset. As technology continues to play a vital role, this investment underscores the commitment to ensuring the safety and security of both police and North Queenslanders.