A drone is now flying every other day over the beaches of Sitges in order to control capacity and provide data to help improve the management of services.
The launch flight took place last Thursday from the breakwater alongside the Club Nàutic. The service runs from 15 July to 22 August, with a drone flying over part of the 18.4 km of Sitges coastline, and flying at a height of about 30 metres and 50 metres from the shore.
There are four flights daily of half an hour – but every other day over Sitges. The service has two flight areas: the one that includes the beaches of Les Anquines in Aiguadolç, and the flight area that covers the beaches of Garraf, Cala Ginesta and Les Botigues de Sitges. There are different landing areas and the drone will only fly when the weather is favourable. The route of the drone is programmed to stop at specific points, for four seconds, to take photographs – with the service guaranteeing the protection of data of users who are on the beaches during the capture of images.
The service has two distinct missions. Firstly, it serves to monitor crowding measures on the beaches: ‘The control of capacity by drones allows us, in coordination with monitors on the beaches, to ensure safety on the beaches of Sitges and distribute users to other areas with a lower occupancy,’ explained the local councillor for beaches, Guillem Escolà. Last year, different monitors manually counted the capacity on the beaches; the new system guarantees a faster and more efficient control.
Obtaining accurate data on the number of people on the beaches also has the aim to improve the management of the services offered there (such as showers, bars, sunbed hire and other facilities). The Sitges Town Council is making a clear commitment to Big Data, in order to analyse tourism data more effectively and improve the management of Sitges as a tourist destination. The aim is to put the person at the centre of the tourism strategy, whether resident or tourist, to offer a better place to both visit and live.
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