Why are so many helicopters flying at night lately? - KSWO 7News | Breaking News, Weather and Sports

Why are so many helicopters flying at night lately?

Fort Sill_ Lawton-Fort sill is seeing and hearing a lot more of these helicopters lately.  The 34th Combat Aviation Brigade is training more and more soldiers who will soon be on their way to Iraq.  But, the chopper noise has some in Lawton disgruntled.

At all hours of the night, Lawton-Fort Sill residents are hearing the sounds of helicopters.  In fact, a Fort Sill helicopter had to make an emergency landing in a yard in Comanche County this week.  All the flights, however, no matter what hour, are happening for a very important reason. 

Garrison Commander Colonel Robert Bridgford says it isn't going to get quieter anytime soon.  "What we've seen over the last month is a real acceleration in those aviation missions," he says.  the 34th Combat Aviation Brigade has been in full force lately, training more than 120 helicopter crews for battle in Iraq.  It's a lot more than usual, and Bridgford says they've been training primarily at night.

Chief Warrant Officer 3, Jason Wright, says they must train as they intend to fight.  "We're obviously working all 24-hours of the day over in Iraq, and they'd like to emulate that over here, so they fly day missions as well as night missions," he says.  Sometimes the brigades fly as far as 100 miles from home to get a better understanding of how battle will be where they are fighting.  They fly over houses and businesses to gain more of an understanding of real life combat.  "The training is very essential in the routes that they plan, and they fly, are to emulate routes that are actually in Iraq - the distance, the legs of each route," says Wright.

Fort Sill has had a lot of calls about the noise occurring at all hours of the night, and Wright says they investigate each incident.  "We make sure our pilots have done the right thing - are they flying at the right altitudes?  Are they flying on the right paths?"  He says they have less than three months to train for battle, so they must ensure that they are prepared for every circumstance.  "It's really a shame when somebody crashes due to pilot error because they just don't have the experience or training," he says.

Fort Sill officials say they investigated every complaint, and say they are following every guideline from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), along with their own standards - at an elevation of at least 700-feet.  The post says air traffic will be reduced in the next few weeks as crews complete their training and depart for Iraq.  However, at the beginning of next year, more soldiers will arrive at Fort Sill for aviation training.

  • Local NewsNewsMore>>

  • Dem, GOP leaders get classified briefings on Russia probe

    Dem, GOP leaders get classified briefings on Russia probe

    Thursday, May 24 2018 12:42 AM EDT2018-05-24 04:42:28 GMT
    Friday, May 25 2018 12:44 AM EDT2018-05-25 04:44:37 GMT
    (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin). In this May 23, 2018, photo, President Donald Trump speaks to the media before boarding the Marine One helicopter on the South Lawn of the White House in Washington. Two House lawmakers who are allies of President Donald Tr...(AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin). In this May 23, 2018, photo, President Donald Trump speaks to the media before boarding the Marine One helicopter on the South Lawn of the White House in Washington. Two House lawmakers who are allies of President Donald Tr...

    A briefing Thursday about classified documents will be for just two Republican House members, both Trump allies, as Trump and his supporters in Congress press for information on the outside informant.

    A briefing Thursday about classified documents will be for just two Republican House members, both Trump allies, as Trump and his supporters in Congress press for information on the outside informant.

  • N. Korea demolishes nuclear test site as journalists watch

    N. Korea demolishes nuclear test site as journalists watch

    Thursday, May 24 2018 6:32 AM EDT2018-05-24 10:32:00 GMT
    Friday, May 25 2018 12:44 AM EDT2018-05-25 04:44:13 GMT
    Journalists took a long journey up to North Korea to witness the destruction of what North Korea said were nuclear sites. (Source: CNN)Journalists took a long journey up to North Korea to witness the destruction of what North Korea said were nuclear sites. (Source: CNN)

    North Korea has carried out what it says is the demolition of its nuclear test site in the presence of foreign journalists.

    North Korea has carried out what it says is the demolition of its nuclear test site in the presence of foreign journalists.

  • Trump awards Medal of Honor to Navy SEAL in Afghan assault

    Trump awards Medal of Honor to Navy SEAL in Afghan assault

    Thursday, May 24 2018 3:12 PM EDT2018-05-24 19:12:14 GMT
    Friday, May 25 2018 12:36 AM EDT2018-05-25 04:36:27 GMT
    (AP Photo/Susan Walsh). President Donald Trump stands with Master Chief Special Warfare Operator Britt K. Slabinski during a ceremony to award him the Medal of Honor in the East Room of the White House in Washington, Thursday, May 24, 2018. Slabinski o...(AP Photo/Susan Walsh). President Donald Trump stands with Master Chief Special Warfare Operator Britt K. Slabinski during a ceremony to award him the Medal of Honor in the East Room of the White House in Washington, Thursday, May 24, 2018. Slabinski o...
    President Donald Trump has awarded the Medal of Honor to a Navy SEAL who oversaw a daring assault and rescue mission on a snowy Afghanistan mountaintop in 2002.
    President Donald Trump has awarded the Medal of Honor to a Navy SEAL who oversaw a daring assault and rescue mission on a snowy Afghanistan mountaintop in 2002.
Powered by Frankly