Drone Scare Grounds Flights At Newark Airport
Flights were suspended at Newark International Airport in New Jersey after two drones were spotted flying nearby.
A pilot told air traffic control that one of the drones came within 30 ft (9 m) of his aircraft.
He was flying at Teterboro Airport, a nearby private facility, but officials closed Newark International as a precaution,
The airport is the 11th busiest in the US, with 20 million using it each year.
The incident comes after a major disruption over the Christmas period at London’s Gatwick airport, where apparent drone sightings grounded hundreds of flights over the course of three days.
About Tuesday's drone scare in New Jersey, the Federal Aviation Authority (FAA) said in a statement: "At approximately 5 pm, we received two reports from incoming flights into Newark that a drone was sighted at about 3,500 ft above Teterboro, New Jersey.
“At that point, flights arriving into Newark were held for a short duration. Since then, and with no further drone sightings, arrivals have been resumed.
“However, we still have a ground stop in place at other airports departing for Newark until a backlog of arrivals can be cleared. We expect that to be lifted soon."
United Airlines, which uses Newark as a hub, said: "The impact to our operations has been minimal so far. We are working closely with the airport and the FAA to return our operations to normal as quickly as possible."
Drones have lately become a threat for the aviation industry.