UPS and CVS are teaming as much as ship prescription medication by way of drone to residents of The Villages retirement neighborhood in Florida. The service, which is able to use Matternet’s M2 drones, is being performed with authorization from the Federal Aviation Administration.
The drone deliveries will start on Could 4th. The primary flights can be lower than half a mile and can be delivered to a pickup location close to the retirement neighborhood. Initially, a UPS floor automobile will full the supply to the resident’s door. The prescriptions can be delivered from one CVS retailer, with two further shops becoming a member of at a later date.
UPS, which has been conducting restricted drone supply experiments in North Carolina, mentioned it’s increasing its drone service to assist people who find themselves sheltering in place as a result of novel coronavirus pandemic.
“Our new drone supply service will assist CVS present secure and environment friendly deliveries of medicines to this huge retirement neighborhood, enabling residents to obtain drugs with out leaving their properties,” mentioned Scott Worth, UPS chief technique and transformation officer, in a press release. “UPS is dedicated to enjoying its half in combating COVID-19, and that is one other approach we are able to assist our healthcare prospects and people with progressive options.”
These aren’t the primary drone deliveries which were made within the US, nor are they even the primary from UPS particularly. Google offshoot Wing launched a drone supply service of its personal final 12 months in Virginia, which delivers over-the-counter medicines and different well being and wellness objects.
UPS acquired authorities approval to function a “drone airline” final October. Since then, the logistics large’s drone subsidiary, UPS Flight Ahead, has performed a number of thousand deliveries of prescriptions to retirement communities in North Carolina.
However the expertise continues to be in its testing section and never able to scale considerably. Nonetheless, the COVD-19 pandemic has afforded each UPS and CVS a possibility to point out off their nascent abilities in delivering small, ultralight packages brief distances utilizing drones.