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This shipping company is already testing supply delivery drones

September 24, 2014

A quadrocopter drone controlled remotely transports a post package during a test flight for the Deutsche Post DHL.Patrik Stollarz/AFP—Getty Images

This post is in partnership with Time. The article below was originally published at

By Jack Linshi, TIME

German logistics company DHL said Wednesday it’s testing drones to deliver supplies to the German island of Juist, in what it says is the first time a drone has been authorized to transport goods in Europe.

The drone, nicknamed the “parcelcopter,” can fly up to 40mph and will deliver medication and other emergency items to the island when ferries or air travel are not operating, Reuters reports. The flights will take between 15 and 30 minutes.

The delivery system may be implemented elsewhere to deliver equipment during emergencies if the trial is successful.

DHL’s drone trial follows in the footsteps of U.S. firms who are looking to test unmanned aircraft for logistics purposes. Amazon (AMZN) asked regulators for permission to test its “Prime Air” drone delivery system in June, while Google (GOOG) revealed that it was testing its own similar system two months later.