For the second time this weekend, the Air Force scrambled fighter jets to respond to an violation of the restricted air space above President Donald Trump’s Mar-a-Lago estate near Palm Beach, Fla.
Trump was spending his third weekend in a row at the “Southern White House,” when the incidents happened.
The air space near his home is off limits when the president is at his estate, as was the case when President Reagan and Bush traveled to their respective western White Houses, or when Barack Obama vacationed in Hawaii or Martha’s Vineyard.
Two F-16s made “the intercept about noon Sunday, according to Air Force SMSgt. Chuck Marsh, a spokesman for the North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD) and U.S. Northern Command,” the Orlando Sentinel reported
NORAD: F-15 jets go supersonic, trigger sonic boom to intercept plane near Trump estate in Florida. https://t.co/PMLZwBV2ZQ
— NBC Nightly News (@NBCNightlyNews) February 20, 2017
The general aviation aircraft was not communicating when it entered the restricted air space near Trump’s home.
An F-16 pilot was able to establish communication with the aircraft.
“The pilot was very compliant,” said Marsh, and left immediately.
The Sunday incident followed another on Friday evening, when the Air Force scrambled a pair of F-15’s to intercept another aircraft, which was also not in communication with air traffic control.
The jets deployed from Homestead Air Force Base, about 90 miles south of Mar-a-Lago, and broke the sound barrier to reach Trump’s location, alarming many local residents.
“The intercept required the Air Force F-15s from Homestead Air National Guard Base to travel at supersonic speeds, a sound noticed by area residents, to get to the general aviation aircraft where they were able to establish communications,” NORAD said in a statement late Friday.
Booming sound heard in @CityofWeston and nearby cities was from military planes headed to Palm Beach County. Please don’t tie up 9-1-1.
— Broward Sheriff (@browardsheriff) February 18, 2017
Again, the aircraft that entered the restricted space was compliant after the Air Force made contact.
Trump kept an active schedule during his time in Florida over President’s Weekend, including a rally on Saturday in Melbourne and interviewing candidates to replace Gen. Michael Flynn as national security adviser.
NARROWING THE SEARCH: President Trump interviews candidates for NSA role pic.twitter.com/t5llN7DT5r
— FOX & friends (@foxandfriends) February 20, 2017
Trump is scheduled to return to Washington, D.C. on Monday evening.
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