To save lives by creating expertise in all aviation activities using unmanned aerial vehicles.
To save lives by establishing a state-of-the-art, world’s highest standard UAV training academy.
To save lives by working with federal, state and regional governments and their emergency services – police, rescue and lifesaving organisations, fire and ambulance services.
To save lives by deploying Little Ripper UAVs from the oceans and coastal shorelines to the deserts, jungles and mountains. To be the guardians of our national parks, our dams, power and water supplies.
Keeping what is precious to us all protected
Ten years after the initial vision, Little Ripper Lifesaver was born…
In the immediate aftermath of the devastating hurricane Katrina that destroyed most of New Orleans in 2005, Kevin Weldon, the founder of Little Ripper Lifesaver, observed an unmanned drone helicopter flying along flooded streets
searching for survivors. This was the first deployment of drones in a disaster and they were instrumental in helping to find some 5000 people,
stranded and alive in their flooded homes.
Kevin, the founding president of International Lifesaving, immediately set about working on the possibility of developing a search and rescue service in Australia using unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs). After a decade of efforts, he was finally able to assemble the right people and resources to make it happen.
On 28 February 2016, Westpac formally announced their sponsorship of the trial of autonomous, longrange Little Ripper Lifesaver© unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) for search and rescue.
This new sponsorship complemented Westpac’s existing 42-year sponsorship of the Westpac Life Saver Rescue Helicopter Services (WLRHS) and further strengthened their commitment to supporting local communities and making Australia safer. As part of the trial, the Little Ripper Lifesaver UAVs sought to integrate with local emergency services including Surf Life Saving NSW.
The trial involved remote control aircrafts initially patrolling a number of northern NSW coastlines and testing and fine-tuning capabilities to better determine the role of the UAVs in saving lives and helping to keep the community safe.
Our partners have allowed Little Ripper Lifesaver to rapidly progress on its core mission to save lives and to establish a globally groundbreaking UAV based search and rescue service.