Saving people’s lives with an innovative drone from Twente

Twente company DronExpert has developed an innovative drone that is capable of detecting drowning people and providing them with a lifebuoy. Roger Borre, director of DronExpert, demonstrated the drone on Texel on Drone Innovation Day, for members of rescue teams. 

In short

  • 90% of people that drown do so in open water.
  • DronExpert developed a drone that can detect drowning people and provide them with a lifebuoy.
  • Rescue teams in California (USA) have already extensively tested a similar model. 

Global Goal

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Reducing the risk of drowning

Around 10% of people that drown do so in a swimming pool; the remaining 90% drown in open water. Roger Borre from DronExpert is convinced that the number of people drowning in the sea can be significantly reduced if rescue teams detect the drowning people earlier and if they can provide them with a lifebuoy using the drone.  

Drone DJI-M300

The DJI-M300 drone from DronExpert can detect two drowning people, even when it is dark. The drone is equipped with a camera that can detect drowning people, and it can use a thermal camera to detect drowning people in the dark.  Once the drone has found the drowning person, it can lower a lifebuoy on an elastic band. The lifebuoy inflates itself when it comes into contact with water. 


The drone can stay in the air for 55 minutes, and search up to 8 kilometres away from the coast while still on the beach. You can view the footage on your phone or laptop. 

Extensive testing in the United States

DronExpert has already sold several similar drones to rescue teams in California (USA). This model made it possible to provide drowning people with one lifebuoy. The DJI-M300 can drop two lifebuoys at the same time, which will then also save two people. 


Date: 15 September 2020 |