Created: 11/15/2012 6:53 AM KSTP.com By: Michael Brannen
Jets will fly over Minneapolis today, and will be seen as far as South Dakota. The North American Aerospace Defense Command, or NORAD, will conduct exercise flights on Thursday as they practice intercept and identification procedures. The flights are scheduled to occur between 1:00 p.m. and 3:00 p.m.
The NORAD jets will be near military aircraft, which will be taking on the role of intercepted aircraft. In order to test responses, systems and equipment, NORAD continuously conducts exercises with a variety of scenarios. These exercises are carefully planned, closely controlled and include exercising airspace restriction violations, hijackings and responding to unknown aircraft.
NORAD has conducted exercise flights of this nature throughout Canada and the U.S. since the start of Operation Noble Eagle, the command’s response to the terrorist attacks that occurred on Sept. 11, 2001.
There are other exercise flights in other parts of the country. Those are off the coast of Vancouver Island, British Columbia and Seattle, Washington, and between the Kobuk Valley National Park, Alaska and Anchorage, Alaska.