Think about how people would feel if they knew they had a safe place to live and that someone cared about them. The city of Copenhagen, Denmark, is a great example. In fact, The Economist’s Safe Cities Index 2021 named it the safest city in the world for people. Tryghed is the word for it in Danish culture (truck-hed). In this article from a series about the future of video, we talk about how video technology is changing safety and security.
I will look at how video technology is being used in new and different ways to make society safer for everyone and make a little Danish “tryghed.”
Search and rescue teams can find people faster with the help of video technology.
Search and rescue teams often have to find people in the most difficult situations, like in tall grass where they can’t see, in a race against time to find people in tidal areas, or in the middle of the night when it’s completely dark. The person may be seriously hurt and need medical help, so teams need to find them as soon as possible.
Rescue teams use video technology on drones to make their search efforts more effective. According to the BBC, some teams say that using video drones cuts their search times by up to 50% because a drone can scan large areas much faster than a team on foot. Using thermal video technology, rescue teams can find someone in trouble from a long way away, even if they can’t see the person clearly.
In the UK, a video drone found a man who had been lost in tall grass for more than 18 hours. The rescue team said that it was “very likely” that video had saved the man’s life. This year, hikers who didn’t know the area got stuck up to their knees in wet mud in one of Europe’s largest urban parks. Even worse, it was after dark, and the whole area was completely dark. The rescue team found them after only 30 minutes by using thermal video technology on a drone.
When an avalanche hits a mountain area, time is of the essence. The BBC said that skiers who get buried in snow have the best chance of survival if they are found and dug out within 15 minutes. Most of the time, there aren’t many or any signs on the ground that show where the person is buried. Today, drones with thermal cameras can find people buried in snow, which cuts down on the time it takes to find them. Soon, drones will use multispectral video technology to find out if a person who has been buried is breathing carbon dioxide gas.
Even though these are great improvements, technology still can’t do everything. Video makes it easier for rescuers to find someone buried, but it can’t dig them out. There is still a need for traditional rescue teams with dogs and people.
People’s lives are saved when they fall into the harbor by accident.
Let’s say it’s a cold winter night and someone falls into the harbor by accident. What happens next could decide whether or not the person lives or dies. Falls into harbors by accident are very dangerous. Falls can kill you in just a few minutes if you don’t notice them.
The Danish city of Aalborg is using thermal video technology and video analytics with the help of Milestone Systems and Aalborg University. If someone falls into the harbor, the system can detect it and call the police or fire department right away. The control center decides how to help the person by looking at live video from the scene of the problem.
The system uses thermal cameras instead of high-quality cameras to protect the identities of the people who use the harbor area. This is a good way to use video technology because, unlike regular video cameras, thermal cameras don’t record sensitive information like a person’s face or a car’s license plate number.
Predictive safety is a way to keep people from getting into dangerous situations that could cost them their lives.
At the Aalborg harbor, technology responds to an event after it has happened. When we look ahead, we can see that video technology could be used in a proactive way. We call this “predictive safety,” and right now it is still just an idea.
Predictive safety means teaching technology to recognize the kinds of actions that usually lead to accidents and to warn people before they get into a situation that could endanger their lives. For example, the system can tell who is staggering on the edge of the harbor by using thermal video technology to protect their identity. The system calls the police and fire department, and they talk to the person through the camera’s loudspeaker to tell them they are in danger.
Even though video technology can help a lot when people find themselves in life-threatening situations, it can’t stop it from happening. The safest thing to do is still to use common sense.
Find a good balance between safety and privacy.
These are just a few of the new things we think will be done with video technology in the future. There will be a lot more, and we don’t know all the answers. Video technology can help make people safer in a lot of ways. But it is under a lot of scrutiny in today’s society. It must always be used in a way that is safe and private. If we do that, the only thing that will stop video technology from getting better in the future will be our imagination.
The use of video technology is making our lives better. We have to use this amazing technology in a responsible way if we want future generations to agree with us.