EHang’s 216F – the company’s autonomous aerial vehicle (AAV) designed for firefighting missions – has been used by emergency departments for the first time as part of a rescue drill in China.

The model was deployed alongside EHang’s flagship 216 model and Falcon B Series during the exercise in Laixi City, Qingdao in the Shandong Province, which completed high-rise firefighting and rescue exercises. It follows the 216F completing a technical examination set by the China National Fire-Fighting Equipment Quality Supervision Testing Centre.

The drill replicated a high-rise fire scenario on a construction site, where the Emergency Command Bureau of Laixi City quickly dispatched multiple aircraft to provide emergency air support.

Each aircraft successfully completed tasks such as fire detection, aerial broadcasting, airdropping emergency firefighting supplies, breaking high-rise windows and extinguishing fires, and rescuing trapped persons. It also proved they are viable solutions to critical pain points in urban high-rise firefighting which will help improve efficiency during emergency situations.

Huazhi Hu, Founder, Chairman and CEO of EHang, said: “The fire rescue drill in Laixi city, Qingdao, demonstrated the practical utilisation of EHang to support smart city emergency response and firefighting management in air firefighting and rescue scenarios.

“In the future, this can be expected as a fundamental element in building a lifeline for more urban high-rise firefighting scenarios and power the optimisation of smart city emergency response and firefighting management systems.”

The fire drill is based on the authentic lack of capabilities in local high-rise emergency rescue and firefighting forces, fully demonstrating the advantages of UAVs in high-rise rescue, such as breaking through space limitations, rapid response, remote monitoring, cluster management, multi-machine linkage, and avoiding casualties. 

EHang has said its AAVs also supplements the UAV emergency rescue and firefighting force in Laixi City, helping to establish an efficient unified command, prompt response, and orderly coordination UAV emergency rescue and firefighting linkage mechanism.

This would provide more accuracy for more effective auxiliary decision-making in handling emergencies and improve the overall capabilities of urban emergency rescue and firefighting forces.