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Night flying warning as US air bases take part in exercise

PUBLISHED: 16:41 07 February 2020 | UPDATED: 16:43 07 February 2020

Night flights will take place involving aircraft from the US Air Force bases at RAF Mildenhall and RAF Lakenheath. Picture: AIRMAN 1ST CLASS MADELINE HERZOG

Night flights will take place involving aircraft from the US Air Force bases at RAF Mildenhall and RAF Lakenheath. Picture: AIRMAN 1ST CLASS MADELINE HERZOG

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Residents in west Suffolk are being warned of night flights from Lakenheath and Mildenhall as the two American air bases take part in an exercise.

The 48th Fighter Wing, 100th Air Refueling Wing, 352nd Special Operations Wing and 501st Combat Support Wing will participate in a 48 hour readiness exercise between February 11 and 13 that will include limited flying at night.

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The US Air Forces said that during this period communities and the surrounding regions of RAF Lakenheath and RAF Mildenhall, along with RAF Fairford in Gloucestershire, may see and hear aircraft taking off and landing, and transiting to training ranges over the North Sea several times between sunset and sunrise.

"We understand night flying operations can cause disturbance and we will continue to minimise the impact however possible," said Colonel Will Marshall, commanding officer of the 48th Fighter Wing.

"These types of training exercises are necessary to ensure our airmen maintain a level of readiness to support and defend our nation, the United Kingdom and our allies."

Col Marshall said overland flying would be limited as much as possible between sunset and sunrise and the exercise did not include plans for low-altitude flying in East Anglia or the surrounding regions during established quiet hours.

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