A Reaper attack and surveillance drone has gone down in Lake Ontario during a training mission about 1 p.m. local time. The Reaper belonged to the Syracuse, New York-based 174th Attack Wing of the Air National Guard, which trains Air Force pilots to fly them all over the world. The flight originated at Fort Drum north of Syracuse and the aircraft was operating in designated airspace on the eastern side of the lake. It was not armed and no injuries were reported.
The Coast Guard and personnel from Fort Drum were searching for the wreckage late Tuesday. There was no word on what might have caused the crash. The Reaper looks like its surveillance-only predecessor, the Predator, but it has considerable offensive capability. For one thing, it has a 950-horsepower turboprop rather than the 115-horsepower piston engine on the Predator. It can carry thousands of pounds of munitions from missiles to smart bombs.