Low-flying aircraft expected over Pentagon

WASHINGTON — Travelers and residents in the area around the Pentagon can expect to see an odd occurrence in the early morning hours Saturday: An aircraft will be flying very low near the military headquarters.

Between 6 and 8:30 a.m., a small blue and white Lear Jet 60 aircraft will fly over the Pentagon at about 200 feet above the ground on approach to runway 15 at Reagan National Airport.

The Federal Aviation Administration said in a press statement that the plane “will operate several low-level aircraft approaches below 1,000 feet in the vicinity of Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport, the Pentagon, and portions of Maryland, Northern Virginia and the District of Columbia.”

The FAA said the purpose of the operation is “to conduct airborne inspections of all the space- and ground-based instrument flight procedures.”

The plane is a part of the FAA’s Flight Inspection Services, which provide airborne inspections of the electronic signals from navigational aids that support aircraft departure, en route and arrival procedures throughout the nation’s airspace system.

They evaluate flight procedures and surveillance systems for accuracy, aeronautical data, fly-ability and obstacle clearance. They also perform inspections on all Department of Defense navigational facilities that are designated as essential to the defense of the U.S.

J.J. Green

JJ Green is WTOP's National Security Correspondent. He reports daily on security, intelligence, foreign policy, terrorism and cyber developments, and provides regular on-air and online analysis. He is also the host of two podcasts: Target USA and Colors: A Dialogue on Race in America.

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