Drones Cause Newark Ground Stop

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Flights were disrupted at Newark Liberty Airport on Tuesday evening after two drones were spotted over Teterboro Airport, 17 miles away. The FAA said the drones were flying at about 3,500 feet. The FAA issued a ground stop at Newark and inbound flights were put in holds. The holding aircraft were allowed to land starting about 5:45 p.m. but Newark-bound aircraft that hadn’t taken off yet were held at their departure airports to allow the backlog of arrivals at Newark to clear. Assuming no more drone sightings, normal operations were expected to resume.

The FAA comments dealt solely with Newark and the impact on Teterboro, the busiest business airport in the U.S., wasn’t clear. Drone sightings closed London’s Gatwick Airport for two days over the holiday travel rush and caused hundreds of flight cancellations.

Comments (8)

It's amazing that "drones" were not an issue until the FAA started making a big deal about regulating them. Going to be "CB radio" all over again!

Posted by: matthew wagner | January 22, 2019 6:41 PM    Report this comment

This + ATC not getting paid + TSA not getting paid = nightmare

Posted by: jvo fnr | January 22, 2019 7:05 PM    Report this comment

I don't "get" why we're worrying about drones. A while back, we were told right here that drones weren't a problem, we were overreacting and -- besides -- they'd bounce right off airliners anyways. Not only that but between ADS-B, geo-fencing and FAA regulation, everything would be hunky-dunky.

Posted by: Larry Stencel | January 23, 2019 8:25 AM    Report this comment

A segment just now on TV says ... "drone sightings are up 835% since 2014."

Posted by: Larry Stencel | January 23, 2019 8:46 AM    Report this comment

You're not allowed to fly a drone within 5 miles of an airport, so why did they shut down an airport 17 miles away? Something doesn't add up.

Posted by: Thomas Wiley | January 23, 2019 10:58 AM    Report this comment

@Thomas - it was at 3,500 feet. The 5 mile limit assumes they are below 400'

Posted by: Al Secen | January 24, 2019 6:37 AM    Report this comment

"You're not allowed to fly a drone within 5 miles of an airport, so why did they shut down an airport 17 miles away? Something doesn't add up."

Other reports explain that Teterboro is right under the apporach path for Runway 22 at Newark, which is why those flights were affected.

Posted by: Kirk Wennerstrom | January 24, 2019 11:52 AM    Report this comment

'Mathew wagner''s comment is irresponsibly stupid.

Hitting a hard object in the air could immediately take down a helicopter with its fragile rotor systems, and cause damage to an airliner that would cost much to repair and possibly affect control (hit LE flaps, elevator, rudder, .....).

The problem is irresponsible idjits, or worse now that eco-activists and outright terrorists know they can disrupt airport operations.

Posted by: Keith Sketchley | January 24, 2019 2:32 PM    Report this comment

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