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Cell tower antennas

Use Case- Infrastructure

USE CASES - Infrastructure

AFRS is authorized to offer emergency robotic response services to critical components of our national infrastructure.   This allows us to swiftly react to situations that may impact public welfare, public safety, or our national infrastructure.

When AFRS fire pilots respond, we can seamlessly stream live content of your infrastructure concerns directly to your operations center and/or your operations staff. This enables your team to promptly make decisions regarding any necessary parts or equipment that may be required to restore services to the effected areas.

Below you will find a common cell tower scenario.

Scenario Overview:
This scenario emphasizes the critical situation that unfolds after a severe storm damages a cellular tower, disrupting vital public safety services and affecting over 2,000 civilian customers. The impacted tower served as a lifeline for the regional hospital, multiple fire departments, the city police department, and the county Sheriff's office. It also provided essential internet services to homes and businesses, impacting security systems and electronic safety features. The urgency is compounded by the delayed arrival of a Cell-On-Wheels (COW) unit due to severe storm conditions and blocked roadways.


Scenario Details:

Storm Impact:

  • A severe storm has just passed through the area, causing widespread damage.

  • The cellular tower, a vital component of the national infrastructure, has been severely impacted.

Affected Services:

  • The cellular tower serves as a lifeline for public safety services:

    • Regional hospital

    • Three different fire departments

    • City police department

    • County Sheriff's office

  • Over 2,000 civilian customers are without cellular service.

  • The storm has knocked out power to the area, preventing regular and emergency calls from cell phones.

Additional Impact:

  • The cellular tower also provided data services for wireless home and business internet.

  • Internet service disruptions impact homes and businesses, affecting:

    • Security cameras

    • Alarm systems

    • Other vital electronic safety features.

Delayed COW Response:

  • A COW unit has been requested to restore cellular service.

  • Severe storm conditions and blocked roadways delay the COW's estimated arrival to up to 4 hours.

Response Actions:

  1. Initial Assessment (telecommunication provider and emergency responders):

    • Evaluate the extent of damage to the cellular tower and related infrastructure.

    • Identify affected public safety agencies, civilian customers, and businesses.

  2. Temporary Communication Solutions (telecommunication provider and emergency responders):

    • Deploy temporary mobile cell-on-wheels (COW) or cell-on-light-truck (COLT) units to restore essential communication as soon as possible.

    • Prioritize communication for public safety agencies.

  3. Power Restoration (utility companies and emergency management):

    • Work on restoring power to the area to facilitate the repair and operation of the cellular tower.

    • Ensure emergency generators are available if power restoration is delayed.

  4. Alternative Data Services (telecommunication provider):

    • Explore alternative data service options to restore internet connectivity for homes and businesses.

    • Coordinate with affected customers and businesses to provide interim solutions.

  5. Public Information (public information officer and local authorities):

    • Disseminate information to affected residents and businesses about the situation, including communication alternatives and safety measures.

    • Address concerns and provide updates regularly.

  6. Tower Repair and Restoration (telecommunication provider and contractors):

    • Mobilize repair crews to assess and repair the damaged cellular tower.

    • Ensure the safety of repair personnel working in challenging conditions.

  7. Data Recovery and Support (internet service providers):

    • Work on data recovery for businesses and homes, especially security systems and critical electronic features.

    • Provide technical support to customers during service restoration.

This scenario underscores the challenges posed by severe weather conditions and blocked roadways, leading to a delayed response from a COW unit. Despite these challenges, rapid response, temporary solutions, and collaboration between telecommunication providers, emergency responders, and utility companies remain crucial in restoring communication and data services in the aftermath of a severe storm.

How could AFRS enhance your infrastructure operations team?

Interagency Communication
Unlike private drone pilots, AFRS maintains a contract with MARCS.  If your infrastructure team is already using MARCS this public safety communications network allows seamless communications when public welfare and safety is at risk.

Rapid Response
AFRS, when in full operation, can mobilize up to four additional pilots who can arrive on the scene within approximately 30 minutes.  This is due to our strategic coverage areas and preplanning measures.

Cloud / Streaming Capabilities
With AFRS redundant mobile data communications technology and utilizing Firstnet, our team can stream vital data during most disasters.   This allows your operations team to get a first hand look at the incident scene and expedite your restoration of service.

Enhanced Visual Capability
Our public safety drones support up to 200X visual zoom and onboard spotlights and thermal imaging for night operations.


This level of clarity allows our drones to provide your team detailed data with amazing clarity.

Thermal Imaging
AFRS's thermal imaging can easily read high/low temperatures for a particular video/picture frame and also allows us to provide pinpoint temperature measurements.

This feature may allow your team to determine if antenna arrays are taking on water from the rain or any other temperature related needs.

This provides your operations team additional data they may need to make informed decisions.

Effective Public Address System
In the event your outage has impacted communications - Our public address system allows us to broadcast restoration messages from the sky.


For customers who are completely without communication, this may help provide them a level of reassurance that the matter is being addressed and an estimated timeline of service restoration.

All-Weather Equipment
AFRS employs enterprise-level public safety drones capable of operating in various weather conditions, including rain, snow, high winds, and freezing temperatures.

Continuous Flight Time

Each AFRS pilot carries sufficient batteries and onboard mobile charging to maintain near-continuous flight. Quick battery swaps allow for a 45-second downtime between flights.

Seamless Collaboration

AFRS vehicles are equipped with redundant internet connections, utilizing Firstnet and other data providers. This ensures secure streaming of content to incident command staff and stakeholders anywhere in the world.

Documentation and Review
All drone footage is recorded for post-incident analysis. Detailed video timestamps and coordinates enable easy documentation of important milestones.

This data can prove to be valuable for reimbursement from insurance companies, disaster reimbursement efforts, or for court purposes.

Other Infrastructure Scenarios

AFRS emergency robotic services are not limited to cellular provider scenarios.    Every national infrastructure component can benefit from the ability to see their systems live after a disasters or devastating event.

Regardless if it's a particular circuit breakers/fuse on the electrical grid, a customer transformer type, or a particular pump on a pipeline or waterway... AFRS public safety grade drones can get your team the information they need BEFORE field crews arrive.

This allows your team to improve efficiency and restore services in an effective and expeditious manner.


Thank you for considering a tax deductible donation to AFRS FD
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YOU MATTER! Join AFRS and Make a Difference ​ At AFRS, we believe that many hands make light work, and your talents and wisdom can help us provide amazing emergency services to those in need. ​ We take pride in offering remote-friendly opportunities, respecting the time you dedicate to others. In many cases, you can volunteer from the comfort of your home. ​ Please note that all volunteers are subject to background checks and license verification where applicable.   Interested persons should send their resume and cover letter to ​ ​ Current Volunteer Positions Available: ​ BOARD MEMBERS Our bylaws require all board members to have active/retired experience in Fire, EMS, peace officers, military, or be actively employed by a national infrastructure organization (hospital, transportation, utilities, etc). ​ Board members should be able to: Effectively communicate Work remotely Participate in committees Promote AFRS Attend monthly meetings (remotely) ​ Board members can expect: Regular email communication Attendance at monthly online board meetings Acting in the best interest of AFRS Occasional attendance at functions or group meetings with AFRS customers/vendors Minimum term of office: 3 years The ideal candidate for this position would have prior board experience and uphold high moral standards. FIREFIGHTERS AFRS relies on Ohio certified firefighters to operate our public safety grade drones. Fire pilots should be able to: Perform regular firefighter duties.  - Waivers may be possible in some cases Work remotely without direct supervision Attend monthly meetings (remotely) Operate electronic devices and computers Hold an active Fire 1/2 certification Hold or obtain an FAA 107 pilot's license with night ops certification Have a clean driving record and valid driver's license Function in high-stress environments and dynamic situations ​ Fire pilots can expect: 12-hour shifts (0600-1800 or 1800-0600) No more than 36 hours of volunteer/work per week Exposure to elements and dynamic situations Rewarding training and experiences Life insurance and LOD benefits Disability/injury benefits Remote-friendly environment in many cases Leadership buy-in and genuine appreciation Live drone prophecy test ​ The ideal candidate for this position would be a certified firefighter who holds a FAA 107 license and NFPA 2400 training. ​ Considerations will be made to train up the right candidates to become drone pilots and obtain their NFPA 2400 training. ​ Candidates should also be passionate about their community and eager to learn new technologies that enhance public safety. ​ ​ DISPATCHERS AFRS recognizes the vital role that dispatchers play in our success. They are the "voice" that enables amazing things to happen within our organization. ​ AFRS dispatchers have the ability to work from home anywhere in the United States. ​ Dispatchers should be able to: Effectively communicate via voice, text, and email Have moderate or advanced computer skills Work alone and unsupervised without micro-management Adhere to policies and procedures Provide a stable/reliable internet connection from home Provide a stable/reliable Windows PC, Chromebook, or Android tablet Maintain a quiet background when handling telephone or radio activities Utilize web-based tools such as Google Maps, Open Maps, weather apps, chat, video conference, and others ​ Dispatchers can expect: Flexible shifts that suit your availability No more than 36 hours per week Fast-paced and rewarding environment Communicating with other government agencies on recorded lines Remote-friendly environment for anyone based in the US Leadership that truly values your contributions Making a difference in others' lives and enhancing community safety Regular training and one-on-one mentoring ​ Ideal candidates for this position include individuals passionate about serving the public and eager to learn new skills. ​ ​ SOCIAL MEDIA / VIDEO EDITING AFRS's emergency robotics capture a vast amount of data, including photos and videos that may need to be processed for marketing, fundraising, and training purposes. ​ This remote-friendly position is open to volunteers anywhere in the United States. ​ Social media volunteers should be able to: Perform post-processing of video content Interact with various social media platforms (TikTok, YouTube, LinkedIn, Facebook, etc.) Process messages and respond professionally Review statistical data from each social media platform and relay trends to leadership Create slideshows or collections for gallery display or training purposes Resize, edit, crop, and alter images and video Attend monthly membership meetings Accomplish tasks without direct supervision ​ Social media volunteers can expect: Flexible schedules that fit your life No more than 36 hours per week Team environment Remote-friendly - Work from home ​ Interested persons should send their resume and cover letter to

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