The Los Angeles Fire Department (LAFD) deployed two drones for the first time in an operational environment while responding to the Skirball fire.

LAFD was approved to use unmanned aerial devices, also known as drones, in June amid concerns from the American Civil Liberties Union and other organizations worried about privacy. It is one of the first major metropolitan fire departments with a significant drone program.

Compared to larger fires in the Los Angeles area, the Skirball fire is near homes and a major freeway and has already destroyed at least six homes, Wired reported.

The drone uses thermal imaging to seek out hot spots and a camera to assess property damage, the Los Angeles Times reported. Firefighters used drones when responding to fires in Northern California earlier this year.

LAFD shared the following video of a drone taking flight:

#LAFD launched UAV #drones for the first time today in an operational environment at the #SkirballFire. The drones were airborne for approximately 30 minutes doing aerial damage assessments and checking for hotspots in an area at the north end of Moraga Drive. #advancedtechnology #wildfire

A post shared by LAFD (@losangelesfiredepartment) on

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