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RQ-4 Global Hawk UAV Crash in North Dakota

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RQ-4 Global Hawk UAV Crash in North Dakota

Old 7th Aug 2021, 16:04
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RQ-4 Global Hawk UAV Crash in North Dakota

From Air Force Magazine:

RQ-4 Global Hawk Drone Crashes in North Dakota

Aug. 6, 2021 | By Greg Hadley

An RQ-4 Global Hawk crashed several miles away from Grand Forks Air Force Base, N.D., on Aug. 6, the Air Force announced.

The unmanned aircraft went down in a rural field near Gilby, N.D., and no injuries were reported. According to the Grand Forks Herald, a fire was extinguished at the scene.

The cause of the crash or the current status of the drone have not yet been released, but the 319th Reconnaissance Wing is on site for recovery operations and an investigation, which could take several weeks, Vice Commander Col. Jeremy Fields said in a statement.

The Global Hawk that crashed was a Block 40 variant, one of just 10 in the Air Force fleet, all of which are stationed at Grand Forks. The Block 40 variant achieved initial operational capability in August 2016 and can fly up to 60,000 feet. It is used for high-altitude intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance.

RQ-4s have been at the center of some of the Air Force’s recent budget disputes with Congress—on several occasions, the legislature has blocked or placed limits on the service’s attempts to retire some of the ISR drones. In its most recent budget request, the service asked to retire 20 Global Hawks. Air Force leaders have said the drone cannot survive in contested environments and projected that its successor will be available by the end of the 2020s.

The Aug. 6 crash marks the third time in the past 18 months that an Air Force drone has gone down. Pilots deliberately crashed an MQ-9A Reaper in June 2020 after the aircraft suffered a major fuel leak while flying over Africa, and another MQ-9 crashed that same month in Syracuse, N.Y., when its pilot mixed up the controls.
RQ-4 Global Hawk Drone Crashes in North Dakota - Air Force Magazine

Here is the initial Air Force statement on the incident:

An Air Force RQ-4 Block 40 Global Hawk crashed at approximately 7:00 a.m. Central Standard Time today [August 6, 2021] in a rural field near Gilby, N.D.

The aircraft was from Grand Forks Air Force Base and was returning to base at the time of the accident. The RQ-4 is an unmanned and remotely piloted aircraft, so no people were on board. No injuries were reported at the scene of the accident.

The fire was extinguished and the incident is under investigation with recovery operations underway.

The site is an active military investigation, and the public is requested to avoid the area as much as possible in order to preserve the scene.

“319th Reconnaissance Wing has personnel on site and we anticipate recovery operations and the official investigation may take several weeks,” said Col. Jeremy Fields, 319th Reconnaissance Wing vice commander. “I’d like to personally thank local law enforcement, Customs and Border Protection and emergency services for their support on scene.”

As soon as additional details become available, they will be provided.
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Old 7th Aug 2021, 16:08
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Hope the pilots ok, he might have knocked his coffee off the desk and into his lap in the rush to evacuate
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Old 7th Aug 2021, 16:15
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No pressing restart for this one.
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Old 7th Aug 2021, 16:28
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Control Alt Delete?
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Old 7th Aug 2021, 20:03
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Originally Posted by NutLoose View Post
Hope the pilots ok, he might have knocked his coffee off the desk and into his lap in the rush to evacuate
OR ... he spilled his coffee on the control keyboard, causing magic $moke, resulting in the drone landing short in front of a local Starbucks coffee house.
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Old 7th Aug 2021, 22:35
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WW, we agree, but as no one was injured on the ground one can see the funny side back at control central. Just let’s hope it wasn’t traced to cookies enabled…
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Old 8th Aug 2021, 09:23
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When they downloaded the ground track of the drone, it looked remarkably like Pac-Man.
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Old 8th Aug 2021, 10:03
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Originally Posted by NutLoose View Post
Hope the pilots ok, he might have knocked his coffee off the desk and into his lap in the rush to evacuate
Hero mouse saves village………..
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Old 8th Aug 2021, 21:47
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Originally Posted by NutLoose View Post
WW, we agree, but as no one was injured on the ground one can see the funny side back at control central. Just let’s hope it wasn’t traced to cookies enabled…
Cookie crumbs in the keyboard?
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