Remember the old days when we would wait for a windy day, and rush out with a kite on a string?

Think about how life has changed, the technology that this world has gained, I can't even remember the time I saw a kite in the air. Then out of nowhere, we started seeing kids playing with miniature helicopters. Holding a device, and steering them high in the air. Of course, this was the beginning of the drone era.

Now it's almost pretty common that we hear a buzz in the air, and it's not from a chatty bird

So roughly when did drones start appearing? They have been around longer than you think. According to "Recreational drones became popular in the United States in 2015, with approximately one million expected to be sold by the end of the year" I talked earlier about how much we have seen technology grow, and now the Mandan Police Department has a new member of the force.

A gracious offer from a Mandan citizen

I had a chance to talk to Mandan Police Chief Lori Flaten, she and I laughed on the phone about the "good old days" when the force didn't even have portable phones. Now it's 2022, and thanks to Lynette Lauer, a Mandan resident calling in one day asking if the police needed a drone. Why not? The money for the drone was donated, and they don't come cheap. A drone that will help Mandan Police is about 7-8 thousand dollars each. Lori told me that it's not as easy as just letting go of a kite on a string, there are federal regulations involved, and the department has been going through training and certification.

So how can a drone help Mandan Police?

More than you'll ever know, they can help look for a missing child, they can go into terrain more efficiently and into areas that are difficult for police to reach on foot. I was just a tad surprised at how expensive a drone is, but it made sense when Lori explained that the most costly element of a drone, is the camera. High technology once again. Who knows, maybe one day down the road you might get pulled over by a drone. Flaten wouldn't elaborate if that would be possible or not, but I would keep your eyes on the road and skies now!



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