This is a sad story involving a pack of dogs and a dangerous rescue mission, but it’s also a story that might have a happy ending soon. It’s a story as gripping and emotionally charged as that of “Old Yeller” and “Homeward Bound.” There aren’t any open green fields here, however. And we’re still not entirely sure how it ends.
This story involves a Spanish volcano and the threat of its molten hot lava. This is where at least three emaciated dogs find themselves currently trapped. Now, people cannot safely get to the area without risking their own injury, so some were ready to give up on the dogs entirely. Not this man, though. He sent for permission to fire up his drone and attempt a rescue mission from a safe distance. Authorities just granted that permission and here’s what we know.
The Risks of the Dog Drone Rescue Mission
Jaime Pereira marks the name of the CEO of drone operator Aerocamaras. He is confident that a drone equipped with a wide net will provide the best possible chance for the dogs’ rescue. They’ve spotted at least three dogs who have been stuck in the ashy area for weeks. While the rescue plan is simple enough, that doesn’t make it easy. The drone itself is only 110-pounds and can only carry one dog at a time. And its success is entirely dependent on the dogs’ reactions.
So far, drones have already been utilized to bring food to the area. The dogs are all considered emaciated, though, and have not been eating much. This means they are already weak and probably scared too. The bigger drone and net might scare them even more, making their rescue impossible at that point. Unfortunately, helicopters cannot fly over the area because hot gases can damage their rotors. Drones are really the only viable option here.
On top of the dogs’ reactions, drone operators also have to consider battery life. They really only have limited time to get the individual dogs into the net and fly them back to safety over a thousand feet away, before the battery dies. A dead battery over the lava would of course be catastrophic and tragic.
“It’s the first time an animal is being rescued with a drone and the first time it has to be captured,” Pereira tells reporters. “If that’s the last option that the dogs have? Then we’re going after them.”
Video Footage From the Drones at the Scene
Inside Edition shared some shots of the trapped dogs captured by drones during their food drops (pre rescue mission). At this point, test runs are still being conducted to make sure everything is in check for the critical net drops. Pereira understands they are working against the clock here, but wants to give the dogs the best possible chance at rescue. The video shares that thousands of people have already been evacuated from the area due to safety concerns.