After dealing with some urgent requests re last weeks terrorism attack in England i have returned to my ‘normal’ day job.
I have just spent the day at a house not too far from where i live. Unfortunately for me a neighbour of mine actually saw me there as he drove past in a taxi. He was of for a boys night out and him and the others in the taxi decided t heckle me as they drove past, thanks guys. There i was trying to be inconspicuous.
This has has had its fair share of searches and arrest going on as the wife disappeared a few years ago and the body has never been found. It has been long suspected that the husband was somehow involved, i’m not too sure to what extent. New information has come to light that he may have disposed of the body in the garden as a neighbour reported some landscaping been done around the time she disappeared. Why this neighbour has only just come forward is a mystery i don’t really want to get involved with. It has been known for individuals to say that the garden is suspicious so the police turn up and dig it up. Usually they have to return it to as good as new if nothing is found. It was amazing how much nicer the garden always seemed to be after nothing was found. Luckily with todays technology ground radar can be used to pin point particular areas of interest.
I came along to carry out a more thorough search of a small area inside the house and to carry out some aerial photography to prove the garden hasn’t been damaged after the exercise. Images before and after can certainly stop false claims straight away.
I recently managed to borrow a thermal camera for the drone and was actually keen to try it out. One thing i want to do eventually work out is how far down does a body have to be so that the heat given of by the decomposing body doesn’t register at the surface.
I have carried out a search of the area inside and actually found some faint marks that maybe blood. They are so faint they are virtually invisible to the eye, just chemicals that found them. DNA tests will say who or what they belong to.
My main excitement of the day was flying. I much prefer the flying nowadays as its a totally different imaging platform and usually stress free. The police are roaming the grounds with their death dogs, yes they have dogs that are trained to sniff out decomposing bodies. Admittedly you can quite often smell it yourself but what they do in these situation is bore small holes in the ground and let the dogs sniff around. Any small whiff of a dead body and the dog will indicate the area by siting by the hole. Dogs are bloody clever at times. Whilst this is going on i set up in a safe area just outside the garden so as not to be in the photo’s and get pestered by the officers wanting to have a look. If its shiny and new a policeman wants one and if its not locked away safely they generally get one at your expense.
Eventually i take off and have a fly around the garden taking general images to show the police are being sympathetic and not destructive. I then land and place the thermal camera on. Whilst in the air again i start to learn the subtleties of thermal imaging by looking at the heat give of by humans and the heat given of by the land. Obviously the land in direct sunlight looks different to the land under a tree.
The day carried on quite mundanely until i chatted to one of the officers with a death dog. He explained that they had a secret location that cadavers were buried and that is where they train their dogs. Obviously i couldn’t miss this opportunity so i invited myself later that day to the location to try out the thermal camera.
After arriving to what is a totally inconspicuous location i had the usually safety driving and started to fly. All the bodies are donated to scientific research which is nice, especially for me as my father did. I totally recommend it to anyones its vital for research purposes. Each body is obviously in a different state of decomposition as they have all been in the ground for different lengths of time and also at different depths. What was interesting is that they use different types of soil as well. I suppose everywhere below our feet is different depending on where you are in the world. It was a perfect starting point of me to start learning about thermal imaging.
I only had a short time there as it was getting dark so flying becomes more complex. Why run the risk of hitting things you can’t see when you don’t have to. This story shall continue in the coming weeks as i really want to understand if i can identify a buried body by using the drone and a thermal camera and what is the maximum depths the corpse can be.