FACT CHECK: Does This Video Show ‘Drone Firefighters’ In Ukraine?

Elias Atienza | Senior Reporter

A video shared on Facebook claims to show “drone firefighters” being used in Ukraine.

Verdict: False

The video, filmed in 2020, actually shows a demonstration of new firefighting technology in China.

Fact Check:

Russian airstrikes in Ukraine have intensified, including in the city of Mariupol after Ukraine rejected a March 21 ultimatum to surrender the city, Reuters reported. The war has caused widespread destruction and done an estimated $100 billion in infrastructure damage already, according to a U.N. report.

One video shared on Facebook shows drones being used to put out a fire engulfing a high-rise building as a group of people look on. “Firefighter Drones #Ukraine #Russia,” reads the video’s caption, which also includes a Ukrainian flag emoji. (RELATED: Did The Russian Ambassador To The UN Say That Donald Trump Was Overthrown?)

The video predates the conflict in Ukraine and was not taken in the country. A keyword search found that the footage first appeared on YouTube in January 2020 and was filmed in Chongqing, China. The video shows a demonstration of new drone technology developed by a Chinese drone company to combat high-rise building fires, according to its title and description.

“On January 20, Guofei General Aviation Equipment Manufacturing held a fire drill in Dazu, Chongqing,” reads the video’s description. “Combining the characteristics of high-rise firefighting in Chongqing, they used six high-rise fire fighting drones to quickly put out the fire, so that guests at the scene could witness the miracle of a high-rise fire fighting UAV.”

The Russian-Ukrainian conflict has seen both sides use drones to attack each other, according to The Times. Despite the use of drones in the conflict, there are no reports of drones being used for humanitarian needs.

Elias Atienza

Senior Reporter
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