After a series of calls to the military, officials from Edwards Air Force Base have announced the plane that flew over Santa Clarita on May 4 was theirs.
“The plane was an F-16 with the flight ID number Jestr02,”said John Haire, Director of Media Relations for Edwards AFB. “It was flying a proficiency flight from Edwards to Mugu [Air Force Base] and back that evening.”
According to Haire the plane flew an IRR flight, which means that it flew at standard altitude of 10,500 its entire trip.
When asked about the numerous reports of aerial acrobatics seen over the city, Haire said that the plane was in constant contact with the controller of the flight at Edwards, connected by a transponder.
“The controller informs the plane of any alterations to course it needs to make and if it was making sudden changes in altitude the controller would know,” said Haire.
Edwards denies that there was a second plane following the original one, but says another plane was scheduled to fly with the first F-16.
The flight was taken to keep the pilot current with his flight requirements, known as a proficiency flight, according to Haire.
“The flight lasted around an hour from takeoff to landing,” said Haire.
He also reported that flights that short are typical and the pilot may have been trying to satisfy night flying requirements.
According to Haire all military pilots have to follow Federal Aviation Administration regulations, unless it is a matter of national security, such as an incoming threat.
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