- Eye in the sky and go-anywhere wheels
- Eight-rotor drone included for thermal images
- Watch the Red Cross Discovery in action
PRETORIA, Gauteng – A unique lifesaving Land Rover Discovery has just entered service with the Austrian Red Cross emergency response fleet, complete with an eight-rotor drone, as an airport emergency mobile command centre.
The vehicle, developed from the original Project Hero concept car, is the result of an 18-month collaboration by Land Rover Special Vehicle Operations and the Austrian Red Cross.
It has the latest communications equipment, a long-range thermal-imaging camera fitted to the drone and able to discern a human up to 440m away or identify a vehicle at almost a kilometre.
The operator can also track objects found using the drone simply by tapping the item on the slide-out main computer touchscreen’s video feed and obtain precise co-ordinates – crucial during a rescue operation.
The vehicle is based on a three-litre diesel Land Rover Discovery kitted to reach a remote disaster zone quickly in any conditions, then provide instant updates to improve response times and to co-ordinate emergency planning.
Michael van der Sande, MD of Jaguar Land Rover Special Operations, told The Corner in a media release:“Our partnership with the Red Cross isn’t just about our vehicles. Since 1954 our aim has been to help the Red Cross improve its disaster response. For 18 months our engineers have worked with an emergency response team.”
‘PROUD TO BE WITH LAND ROVER’
The Red Crescent’s Dr Jemilah Mahmood added: “We ‘re grateful for Land Rover’s generous support over the past six decades. The Discovery Emergency Response Vehicle is yet another result of our strong global partnership that brings together the best expertise of the Red Cross and Land Rover in one unique vehicle.
“We are proud to be working with Land Rover to build resilience in communities around the world in the face of natural disasters such as monsoons, flooding and earthquakes.”
Land Rover’s close relationship with the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) began with the donation of a vehicle to be used as a mobile dispensary in the deserts of Dubai in 1954. Since then Land Rover has donated more than 120 vehicles around the world.