This startup is delivering blood bags by drone to some of the most remote places on Earth
A staggering 95% of roads in Africa wash out every year, which makes it nearly impossible for people in some developing countries to receive medical supplies when they need them most.
Zipline, a startup out of Silicon Valley, wants to replace traditional modes of transportation with drones. In Rwanda, the company's delivery service flies blood bags - plasma, platelets, and red blood cells needed for transfusions - from a central hub to primary health clinics and hospitals.
The company has flown 100,000 kilometers in Rwanda since the program's launch last year, delivering 2,600 units of blood over 1,400 flights, according to a press release.
In early 2018, Zipline will launch what it says is the world's largest drone delivery network through a partnership with the Tanzanian government. Its four distribution centers will service an area that covers 10 million to 11 million people, roughly a quarter of the population.
In 2016, we toured the top-secret Zipline headquarters in Half Moon Bay, California. Here's how drone delivery is saving lives in some of the most remote places on Earth.