Nothing to Panic About: Navy Plane Flies Low Over Verrazano


navy-planeA United States Navy jet aircraft EA-6B Prowler was scheduled to do a New York City flyover this morning. The jet was scheduled to fly by the Verrazano Bridge and head north over the Hudson River between 9:30 a.m. and 10 a.m.

The subsonic EA-6B Prowler is an electronic countermeasures aircraft equipped to disrupt enemy radar and communications systems.

The plane is said to be capable of jamming everything from satellite communications and mobile phones to garage-door openers.

Last April, an unannounced flyover involving an Air Force One backup terrified thousands of people as the Boeing 747 and an F-16 jet circled the Statue of Liberty and the lower Manhattan skyline near the World Trade Center site for a half hour.

The fly-over was a photo opportunity authorized by several government officials. The photo op was apparently combined that day with a training exercise to save money.

An official had said the White House military office told the Federal Aviation Administration that it was updating file photos of Air Force One near national landmarks, such as the statute in the New York harbor and the Grand Canyon.

It was carried out by the Defense Department with little warning, infuriating New York officials and putting the White House on the defense. Even Mayor Michael Bloomberg didn’t know about it, and he later called it “insensitive” to fly so near the site of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks.

When told of the flight, President Barack Obama was said to be “furious.”

The White House later apologized, as did Louis Caldera, director of the White House Military Office, who approved the flyover.

Days later, Caldera resigned.

{NY Post/Noam Newscenter}