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After SFO Crash, San Francisco Fire Department Bans Helmet Cameras

The San Francisco fire department won’t be sporting Google Glass any time soon.

After SFO Crash, San Francisco Fire Department Bans Helmet Cameras
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We might not be too far away from a future where emergency personnel wear Google Glass, but San Francisco’s fire chief has explicitly banned the city’s firefighters from wearing helmet-mounted cameras, reiterating a department-wide prohibition on all video cameras.

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“There comes a time that privacy of the individual is paramount, of greater importance than having a video,” Chief Joanne Hayes-White told the San Francisco Chronicle. During the July 6 plane crash at San Francisco International Airport, a helmet camera shot footage of a fire department rig running over a Chinese girl, one of three who died. The footage helped the San Francisco Fire Department determine the girl was alive when hit by the rig.

Google Glass continues to make its way into various segments of society. Mercedes-Benz recently announced its plans to integrate Glass into its upcoming models. At least one doctor has demonstrated how Glass could be used during patient consultations. But as Glass becomes more popular, some are raising privacy concerns. Some casinos have banned it, and it could possibly be banned from theaters. Last week, a patent suggested Google Glass could monitor the pupils of those wearing the device to infer emotion and track what advertisements they’re looking at.

[Image: Flickr user Luis Villa del Campo]

About the author

Based in San Francisco, Alice Truong is Fast Company's West Coast correspondent. She previously reported in Chicago, Washington D.C., New York and most recently Hong Kong, where she (left her heart and) worked as a reporter for the Wall Street Journal

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