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'Drones a cost-effective crime monitoring solution'

The city's JP Smith says drones would be a safer and time saving option as opposed to hiring helicopters.

FILE: The City of Cape Town says owning a drone would be the most cost-effective solution to monitor crime. Picture: Facebook.

CAPE TOWN - The City of Cape Town owning a drone would be the most cost-effective solution to monitor crime, Mayco member for Safety and Security JP Smith said on Tuesday.

The city aims to deploy an unmanned aircraft as early as March next year to monitor crime, land occupations, metal thieves and fires.

But, Smith says this date is unrealistic as many things need to fall in place first.

"For now we will rely on a helicopter to take areal pictures for aerial photography needs."

He does however say that the drone would be a safer, more cost-effective and time saving option as opposed to the time and expense used on hiring a helicopter.

Last week, a drone equipped with a high definition camera, was launched from Rondebosch Common as part of the latest test to see how effective it can be.

The drone, built by Netherlands manufacturer Skycap, was able to hover in the air for an hour, while its predecessors managed to hover for less than half that time.

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