The Greater Tzaneen Municipality is using drones to monitor lockdown compliance. It is also helping with COVID-19 awareness campaigns.

The drones are used in rural areas where there is minimal police visibility.

The area was identified as a hotspot where people were not adhering to lockdown regulations.

A loud hailer is attached to the third one educating people about the dangers of COVID-19 and the importance of staying home during this period.

In the video below, Bheki Cele monitors lockdown compliance in Tzaneen:

Jack Shilubane of Ntiyiso Aviation says the drones are very effective as they can cover a distance of up to 7km. He says the drones are, however, so far flying at a distance of between 800m to 1km.

The drones attract the attention of residents.

Some areas still have service delivery challenges and they are forced to search for drinking water. Muhlaya residents say they have been obeying all the lockdown rules by staying home, but they have not had water for a long time so they are forced to go out and buy water from those who drilled boreholes.

The municipality says the number of people on the streets has been reduced since the intervention.

Municipality’s Neville Ndlala says the introduction of the drones is assisting with conveying the COVID-19 message and encourages people to stay at home and assist government to flatten the curve.

Tzaneen only had one confirmed COVID-19 case, but the patient has since recovered.

In the video below, the Greater Tzaneen municipality uses drones to monitor lockdown regulations.