Drones and driverless boats to protect Singapore’s shoreline

Trials to begin this year.

Singapore will use driverless boats, drones and sensors to guard the island’s coastal waters. The Police Coast Guard will test a driverless patrol boat with surveillance systems, search lights and megaphones at the end of this year. Officers in a command centre will use the boat to intercept suspicious boats. The nine metre-long boat will be trialled in the Johor Straits bordering Singapore and Malaysia, and in waters to the south of the island, according to Today. Singapore will also use a drone to monitor coastal waters from 2019. The machine can fly for 12 hours at a maximum height of 50 metres, and will be tethered to a boat. This will allow the drone to produce clearer images and could be used to monitor a hijacked ship, for instance. The Police Coast Guard will use sensors along the northern and southern coasts from 2018, according to the Straits Times. These sensors will be able to analyse video footage from 360 degrees around them and alert officers to suspicious activity in the water.