Bridger Aerospace launches aerial data tool for wildfires

Bridger Aerospace Group has launched an aerial imagery, intelligence and crowdsourcing tool that firefighters and others can use when fighting wildfires.

It’s the latest example of how government technology is helping public safety agencies address one of the top environmental threats facing the United States, one that promises to increase as change continues. climate worsens.

The Montana-based company says its new FireTrac product is a “commercial multi-spectrum aerial imagery service and consumer application” that can provide real-time wildfire data, according to a statement.

These data come from high-resolution images obtained via an aerial fire mapping platform. The Bridger aircraft have what the statement calls “multi-spectrum precision survey (OE/IR) payloads (with) advanced precision mapping and multi-image orthophoto capabilities.”

On-board sensors and software combine aerial images into visual wildfire data that can be used by firefighters and rescuers, as well as map providers, media, research institutes and other organizations. The idea for public agencies is to use all this data to develop tactical responses to wildfires.

The FireTrac app uses these aircraft images, crowdsourced information, and other data — including from the U.S. Forest Service and other groups — to alert users to fire danger. People can use the app to access evacuation maps, road restrictions, weather and air quality data, and other information.

“I founded Bridger Aerospace with a mission to fight wildfires with specialized modern aircraft and advanced technology to save lives, property and homes,” said Tim Sheehy, Founder and CEO of Bridger Aerospace. , in the press release. “FireTrac is the next step toward our goal of providing critical, real-time wildfire intelligence and situational awareness to anyone who needs it.”

Sheehy, formerly a Navy SEAL, founded the company in 2014. It employs more than 120 people and operates a private fleet of 24 aircraft.

In early August, Bridger announced that it would merge with Jack Creek Investment Corp., a special purpose acquisition company, and go public.

FireTrac is the only latest government technology tool designed to help detect and manage wildfires. Indeed, public agencies and government technology providers are increasingly turning to artificial intelligence and other types of technologies to address the growing threat and cost of wildfires in the United States.

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