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Flight, boat operations to begin next week

Maritime exercise 2017

A 75th Fighter Squadron A-10 flies above targeted boats along Choctawatchee Bay during a Combat Hammer evaluation Nov. 3 at Eglin Air Force Base, Fla. The boats swarm around the water creating a realistic environment to provide pilots an opportunity to train against maritime targets. The 86th Fighter Weapons Squadron’s Combat Hammer is a weapons system evaluation program for air-to-ground munitions. (U.S. Air Force/Samuel King Jr.)

Residents may experience aircraft noise and GPS unavailability Nov. 5-9 when the 53rd Weapons Evaluation Group conducts boat operations in the Gulf of Mexico.

Ground-based navigation and electronic devices or smart phone apps that rely on GPS may be affected in the base’s vicinity while tests are conducted from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. local time.

Normal GPS reliability will resume once testing is complete each day. Those in the area are strongly encouraged to plan activities accordingly.

Each day, fighter aircraft will release munitions between 8 a.m. and 2 p.m. approximately 20 nautical miles south of Destin over the Gulf of Mexico. The test will be conducted within a cleared range safety area, which includes boat surveillance. Notices to mariners will be issued prior to missions and flyers will be handed out at the local marina.

These operations are part of the 53rd Wing's Weapon System Evaluation Program. For more information, call the Team Eglin public affairs office at 882-3931 or the 53rd Wing public affairs office at 882-0423.