Menlo Park Fire Protection District

Post image for Menlo Park Fire District partners with local company to develop drone capabilities during emergencies

Menlo Park Fire District  Chief Harold Schapelhouman recently received authorization from the Fire Board to officially partner with Matternet, Inc. to collaboratively explore drone options for delivery during emergencies. The Menlo Park-based company develops autonomous drone logistics systems.

The Fire District officially started its drone program in 2014 and was one of the first emergency response agencies in nation to receive formal authorization from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to legally fly drones last year. Since then the Fire District has trained up six operators, purchased four aerial DJI platforms and recently used the drone to fly critical missions looking for lost boaters in the San Francisco Bay, to monitor record water flows and damage to the San Francisquito Creek, and to document traffic congestion along critical emergency response routes.

“We’ve been meeting with Matternet since October of last year, discussing how to best collaborate and drive this specialized field and its evolving technology forward to a more useful, functional and beneficial purpose for first responders” the Chief said. “We will use this partnership as an anchor point to open the door to other innovative and interchangeable operational capabilities…We’re focused on guiding individuals or groups towards results that make sense to first responders so they are actually creating useful tools, not toys, that can enhance real world emergency operations.”

One of the key elements of the Matternet system is an interchangeable M2 payload box which has an internal dimensions of 19 by 11 by 13 cm.

“The standardized payload box configuration allows us the flexibility to work with other vendors and develop a number of useful and essential emergency services applications such as an advanced situational awareness and firefighter tracking capability, multi-camera, chemical sensor, scene lighting and other equipment payloads that would be beneficial to first responders. It can also be used to carry equipment such as defibrillators, oxygen, medical equipment, life preservers or other equipment that could enhance emergency operations and save people’s lives.”

Photo courtesy Menlo Fire; Battalion Chief Tom Calvert, Matternet CEO Andreas Rapotopoulos, Fire Chief Harold Schapelhouman and Matternet Business Development Executive Ben Hansen

{ Be the first to comment }

Menlo Fire stays busy during recent series of winter storms that brought rain and wind

Thumbnail image for Menlo Fire stays busy during recent series of winter storms that brought rain and wind

During the last series of winter storms, the Menlo Park Fire Protection District responded to 168 emergencies that were received through 911 calls. Crews came across other unofficial incidents as they drove around their first-response areas. Of weather-related significance were two power pole fires, 13 wires down, 13 trees down, nine public assist water-related and nine alarm soundings due […]

Click to read more →

Ceremonial ground breaking for new Fire Station 6 in Menlo Park

Thumbnail image for Ceremonial ground breaking for new Fire Station 6 in Menlo Park

A ceremonial ground breaking for the new fire station at 700 Oak Grove Avenue in Menlo Park took place today, attended by city officials, council members and fire district personnel. The old Fire Station 6 was opened in 1953, two years after a new main fire station was opened in 1951 next door to Saint Patricks’ Seminary […]

Click to read more →

Firefighters bid adieu to downtown fire station

Thumbnail image for Firefighters bid adieu to downtown fire station

Retired Menlo Park Firefighter Dave Carr and Chief Ollie Brown stood across the street from Fire Station 6 in Menlo Park on Monday (11/28/16) as it was torn down to make way for a new modern and larger emergency fire facility, estimated to be completed by May of 2018. Carr was assigned to Fire Station 6 located at […]

Click to read more →

Menlo Fire makes a second dramatic mid-air rescue within a few months

Thumbnail image for Menlo Fire makes a second dramatic mid-air rescue within a few months

Two workers were safely rescued from lift basket some 80 feet in the air yesterday by Menlo Park Firefighters. In the early afternoon, Engine 2 was dispatched to 1315 OBrien Drive in Menlo Park on a report of two men trapped on an elevated platform that had malfunctioned. When they arrived, they could see two men […]

Click to read more →

A new Fire Station 6 is coming to downtown Menlo Park

Thumbnail image for A new Fire Station 6 is coming to downtown Menlo Park

Last week, the Menlo Park Fire Protection Board of Directors authorized the rebuilding of Fire Station 6 located on Oak Grove Avenue in downtown Menlo Park. General Contractor Gonsalves and Stronck was awarded a “not to exceed” contract for $7,547,400 as the lowest, qualified bidder. Menlo Park Firefighters assigned to that station have moved out of the old […]

Click to read more →

Menlo Fire makeshift “sky crane” lifts injured man from construction site

Thumbnail image for Menlo Fire makeshift “sky crane” lifts injured man from construction site

Menlo Park Firefighters responded to 1650 Oak Avenue in Menlo Park on Wednesday, August 24, 2016 at 1.42 pm to a report of a construction worker who had accidentally fallen into a basement under construction at the site. Upon their arrival at 1.49 pm, firefighters located the conscious male victim in a corner of an […]

Click to read more →

Squirrel knocks out power to 1,700 customers in Menlo Park trapping two people in elevators

An explosion and a fire alarm Tuesday evening at 1275 Crane Street was followed by a broader power outage, with people calling out that they were trapped in an elevator. Local residents on Crane Street told Fire Captain Seth Johnson that they heard a loud explosion, the power immediately went out in the area, and they found a […]

Click to read more →

Menlo Park Fire begins its official 100th anniversary celebration today

Thumbnail image for Menlo Park Fire begins its official 100th anniversary celebration today

Today, June 27, 2016, the Menlo Park Fire Protection District begins the official journey into its 100th anniversary. On this date in 1916, 100 residents voted in favor — and 58 against — to establish a “Fire Company” in Menlo Park. A petition had been submitted to the San Mateo County Board of Supervisors to establish a […]

Click to read more →

Menlo Park Fire District celebrates 100th anniversary with parade on May 21

Thumbnail image for Menlo Park Fire District celebrates 100th anniversary with parade on May 21

The Menlo Park Fire District’s 100-year anniversary parade is being held on Saturday, May 21, starting at 10 am on Santa Cruz Avenue. Among the highlights: – The Fire District’s 1899 Hose Wagon will be pulled by a team of two horses, the first time in 25 years that has occurred. The Hose Wagon is the oldest piece […]

Click to read more →

Menlo Fire hosts free class on disaster preparedness on April 25

Thumbnail image for Menlo Fire hosts free class on disaster preparedness on April 25

The Menlo Park Fire Protection District is offering a free two-hour course, hosted in the USGS building in Menlo Park, on Monday, April 25 from 7:00 – 9:00 pm. The objective is to teach you what to do before, during and after a disaster. Please register through our event site. Disaster professionals say the most important thing […]

Click to read more →