Oklahoma officials warn against drones near air force base

Oklahoma officials warn against drones near air force base

ENID, Okla. (AP) - Officials at a northern Oklahoma air force base are asking the public to keep recreational drones away from aircraft after a near collision on a training flight.

Lt. Col. Eric Schmidt works at Vance Air Force Base. He tells the Enid News & Eagle that an aircraft on a Jan. 9 training flight came within about 50 feet (15 meters) of a drone flying at an altitude of approximately 1,000 feet (305 meters). Schmidt says that the drone had a light on, but wasn't immediately spotted.

Schmidt says people who fly drones recreationally often don't realize how dangerous a drone can be to an aircraft.

Federal Aviation Administration regulations say drone operators need permission to fly within 5 miles (8 kilometers) of an airport or military airfield. Schmidt says military training routes also have drone regulations.

Information from: Enid News & Eagle, http://www.enidnews.com

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