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Eyes in the Sky for fire

TYSON SHULTZ of the Oregon Department of Forestry poses June 17 with a radio-controlled helicopter at the department's compound on the outskirts of Grants Pass. The department is equipping the aircraft with video and infrared cameras and a GPS locator.

TYSON SHULTZ of the Oregon Department of Forestry poses June 17 with a radio-controlled helicopter at the department's compound on the outskirts of Grants Pass. The department is equipping the aircraft with video and infrared cameras and a GPS locator. AP Photo/Jeff Barnard

The Oregon Department of Forestry is equipping drone aircraft with video and infrared cameras and a GPS locator. It plans to use the helicopter this summer as another set of eyes on wildfires. With privacy concerns dampening the enthusiasm over drones, Oregon is ahead of the curve in actually buying its own unmanned aircraft.

The nation's biggest wildfire agency, the U.S. Forest Service, has been working with NASA drones since 2007, but is not expected to come out with a decision on how to use them until next year.

AP Photo/Jeff Barnard

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