DDC agreement with GlobalMedic for First Nations COVID-19 project
Drone Delivery Canada Corp. on June 4 entered into a 6-month commercial agreement with The David McAntony Gibson Foundation, which operates as GlobalMedic, to transport COVID-19-related cargo like personal protection equipment, hygiene kits, test kits and test swabs. The agreement was arranged in part through Air Canada and the Pontiac Group.
Drone Delivery Canada (DDC) will deploy its platform to provide service to the Beausoleil First Nation Community (BFN) in Ontario. Funding for the project was received by donors, including industrial logistics provider OEC Group Canada. GlobalMedic has provided life-saving aid in the aftermath of disasters since 2002. To date, it has served more than 3.4 million beneficiaries in 220 disasters across 73 countries.
“The Beausoleil First Nation community will benefit from our drone delivery solution during the COVID-19 pandemic by limiting person-to-person contact between the mainland and Christian Island, while keeping their supply chain open,” said Michael Zahra, president and CEO, DDC.
Zahra continues to explain, to the company’s knowledge, this is the first announced COVID-19-related drone logistics project working with a humanitarian aid agency in Canada. “We are grateful to GlobalMedic, OEC Group and other generous donors for their sincere concern for First Nations communities, involvement in this project and embracing our drone technology as a solution,” he said.
The agreement will see DDC provide a defined two-way delivery flight route from/to BFN mainland to/from the BFN Christian Island utilizing its Sparrow drone and DroneSpot takeoff and landing zones, as well as additional drone flight infrastructure as required.
All operations will be conducted in accordance with the Canadian Aviation Regulations and Transport Canada flight authorizations, explains DDC, which notes the flights will be remotely monitored from its new commercial operations centre located in Vaughan, Ontario. DDC expects to begin providing drone delivery services under the agreement in the third quarter of 2020.
“Through consultation with the community, we understand that supply chain issues exist and have been exacerbated by COVID19,” said Rahul Singh, Executive Director at GlobalMedic. “We are excited to use drones as part of the solution to overcome these challenges. We have a well-known history of using drones to respond to crisis zones having deployed our drone teams to dozens of countries using our award winning RescUAV program. We thank the OEC group and other donors to help fund this project and look forward to seeing DDC drones in the air delivering lifesaving aid to our friends in Beausoleil First Nation.”