As coronavirus cases surge again, China puts drones to work [video]

china covid drones

The Guangdong province in southern China is witnessing a sudden uptick in COVID-19 cases. For the last three weeks, authorities have been carrying out mass testing and imposing local lockdowns to control the fresh coronavirus outbreak. And stepping up as first responders for relief and control efforts are drones.

The extremely contagious Indian “Delta” variant of the novel coronavirus was first detected in China on May 21. Since then, an extraordinary testing blitz has been launched in the city of Guangzhou, where the mutant strain is known to be spreading quickly. Neighborhoods are under strict lockdown and service suspensions have been ordered for most businesses.

Zhang Zhoubin, deputy director of the Guangzhou Centre for Disease Control, said recently at a news conference:

The epidemic faced by Guangzhou this time is an unprecedented opponent, and it requires more resolute and decisive measures to deal with it.

Drones help with China’s fresh COVID-19 surge

In this scenario, drones are answering the government’s call for COVID-19 relief support. EHang, a known name in passenger-grade drones and urban air mobility solutions, has been actively involved with epidemic relief and support work since June 4.

Its drones – both passenger-grade and logistics models – have been utilizing the emergency air transportation routes across the Pearl River in Guangzhou to undertake multiple contactless epidemic prevention and control tasks in the quarantine and containment zones.

These include aerial logistics, emergency transportation, aerial inspections, and broadcasting. Further, drones are also transporting the necessary daily household supplies to residents in the quarantine zones. Take a look:

EHang says it has stationed a dedicated flight operations team near the quarantine and containment zones to continue with household and emergency supply air transport. This would both help to reduce the risks of front-line staff contacting the virus and make the COVID-19 control and prevention more efficient in the Guangdong province.

An EHang drone transports supplies across the river.

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