Bayraktar UAVs provide uninterrupted support for earthquake relief in Türkiye

This aerial view shows a collapsed building during ongoing rescue operation in Hatay, southeastern Türkiye, Feb.10, 2023. (AFP Photo)

Bayraktar Akıncı and Bayraktar TB2 unmanned combat aerial vehicles (UCAVs) developed by Turkish drone magnate Baykar are aiding earthquake relief efforts in Türkiye’s south.

In the aftermath of the 7.7 and 7.6 magnitude earthquakes that struck 10 provinces, with the epicenter in the Pazarcık and Elbistan districts of Kahramanmaraş province, the Bayraktar Akıncı UCAVs took off from Şanlıurfa and Batman for nonstop mission flights, the Presidency of Defense Industries (SSB) informed.

These missions included detection, search and rescue support, and coordination activities in adverse weather conditions.

On the first day of the earthquake, conventional planes and helicopters were unable to fly due to adverse weather, storms, snowfall and cloud cover.

However, Bayraktar Akıncı UCAVs, being unmanned, were able to undertake flights in unfavorable conditions. The images captured by the Bayraktar Akıncı's camera provided valuable insight into the meteorological aspects of the disaster. Despite the challenging weather conditions, the Bayraktar Akıncı UCAVs flew for hours, searching for even the most minute detail to evaluate the situation.

The number of Bayraktar Akıncı and Bayraktar TB2 flight missions has been ramped up in the days following the earthquakes and currently, a total of nine Akıncı and 22 TB2s are operating in the region.

The drones have been instrumental in providing continuous updates and data to the crisis response team for damage detection, search and rescue support, along with coordination activities.

In addition, three Bayraktar TB2 UAVs equipped with the Baykar Rapid Mapping Pod have started capturing high-resolution aerial images for damage assessment in the affected areas.

Meanwhile, Baykar has been providing both financial support and humanitarian aid from the first day of the catastrophic quakes.

The amount of cash that the company donated to the region within a period of four days reached TL 655 million ($ 34.77 million), apart from their humanitarian aid support.

The company has also initiated a campaign to donate blood for earthquake victims, which saw some 642 employees participating so far. "We will continue to donate blood tomorrow," it said in a statement on Friday.

Source: Daily Sabah