Skip to comments.For sale: Drones that can fire pepper spray bullets as well as blinding lasers
Posted on 06/26/2014 9:27:53 PM PDT by null and void
Marketed as a riot control copter, device is quickly condemned by International Trade Union
Well, this didnt take long.
A drone manufacturer has put up for sale a remote control copter outfitted with four high-capacity paintball barrels, each capable of firing up to 20 bullets per second, as well as blinding laser and on-board speakers that can communicate with the crowd below.
South Africa-based Desert Wolf, maker of the Skunk octacopter, is marketing the device as a riot control copter that can address crowds without endangering the lives of security staff. The company says it has already received its first order for 25 machines from a mining company that saw it demonstrated at a trade show in London recently.
The International Trade Union Confederation quickly condemned the device and its sale.
"This is a deeply disturbing and repugnant development and we are convinced that any reasonable government will move quickly to stop the deployment of advanced battlefield technology on workers or indeed the public involved in legitimate protests and demonstrations," said spokesman Tim Noonan, who added that the ITUC would now be working to find out which company ordered the drones.
"We will be taking this up as a matter of urgency with the unions in the mining sector globally," he said.
In terms of functionality, Desert Wolfs website says that the Skunk drone can be armed with pepper spray bullets, dye-marker balls, and solid plastic balls. It can fly with up to 4,000 bullets on board, as well as the aforementioned lasers and speakers, due to the eight OS Max electric motors with 16-inch props.
In addition to the mining company that already placed its order, Desert Wolf managing director Hennie Kieser says that there are a number of other customers that are in the process of finalizing their orders. "Some [are] mines in South Africa, some security companies in South Africa and outside South Africa, some police units outside South Africa and a number of other industrial customers," he told the BBC.
Kieser went on to explain why the Skunk was invented.
We designed and developed the Skunk because of a huge safety risk that had to be addressed," he said. "We cannot afford another Lonmin Marikana and by removing the police on foot, using non-lethal technology, I believe that everyone will be much safer."
For those unfamiliar with the story, Lonmin Marikana is in reference to a violent pay strike in 20112 that resulted in 44 deaths at a South African platinum mine. Most of the dead were mine workers, but a few were police officers as well.
Kieser said that Lonmin was not the customer who purchased the 25 drones.
Wait till they get cheap enough for the average home invader to afford.
Then, there will be a market for anti-drone technology.
...and that damn non-stop barking dog behind us. Maybe they could equip this copter to shoot cats.
It carries enough air to shoot 4,000 balls? And drive eight 16 inch props? Must be a monster battery on board.
Wait’ll these are equipped with mini guns and a flotilla of 50 of them hovers over a crowd. Or mini-Hellfire missiles are developed for these platforms.
Dark days ahead.
Don’t worry too much.
Figuring out how to hack them or disable them will be the next entertainment for nerds.
Freaking drones with sharks with lasers on their heads.
A 12 gauge might work for starters!
Man-portable AAA right there.
Have the crowd full of helium ballons with a nice strong nylon fishing line .
“Old-school” technology for a modern-day challenge. I like it.
Not as cheap as the 12 gauge shotgun and.00 buck that would shoot it down.
The Terminator series of movies calls what you’ve just described as HK’s or Hunter-killers. Dark days indeed.
Expect to see jammer imports skyrocket from the UK into the US.
I thought that the Geneva Convention banned weapons that are used to blind people?
Now, where did I put those welder’s goggles?
Yup. It also bans hollow-point ammunition, yet the US government bought a billion rounds...