FORT MORGAN, Ala. (AP) - Two unmanned drone aircraft that washed ashore on the Alabama coast near Fort Morgan have been recovered by the Air Force, which downed them off the Florida Panhandle during
an operational test.
The first BQM-167A aircraft was spotted on the beach on Wednesday near the Beach Club Condominiums. A second drone washed ashore yesterday and was spotted by beachgoers.
The unarmed planes, called Skeeters, are about 20 feet long.
The Air Force said a fighter jet from the 53rd Fighter Wing shot the drone planes down March 17-20 south of Panama City, Florida, as part of an operational test.
Staff Sgt. Andrew Leonhard said bad weather prevented their earlier recovery. The drones belong to a unit based at Tindall Air Force Base in Panama City.
The BQM-167A is used primarily for test and evaluation of air defense systems, with air-to-air missile training as a secondary application. It can be air or ground launched, and can carry a full range of target payloads.
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