Bomb disposal robots are enlisted straight from the battlefields of Afghanistan to help human colleagues extinguish fires in the capital. Nina Teggarty reports for More4 News.
Fire-fighting robots have been demonstrating how they can help their human colleagues in Greater London and the Home Counties.
Several different types of remotely operated vehicle (ROV) are in operation but it's thought their biggest merit is tackling highly-destructive gas cylinders which could explode at any moment.
The robo-firefighters are also a valuable asset when it comes to the initial assessment of a fire scene. Standard Fire & Rescue Service procedure is to impose an hazard zone of 200m for up to 24 hours. But by sending in the robots, major transport disruption and unnecessary evacuation procedure can be avoided.
The robot service is delivered by QinetiQ and funded jointly by Network Rail, the Highways Agency and Transport for London, in collaboration with the London Fire Brigade.
Krishnan Guru-Murthy talks to Simon Christoforato from QinetiQ, the company which is operating the service