Press Releases

WADS conducts air defense exercise over Washington/Oregon border

UNRELEASED | March 31, 2014
JOINT BASE LEWIS-MCCHORD, Wash. -- The Western Air Defense Sector will conduct air defense exercise Felix Hawk over the Goldendale area of the Washington/Oregon border April 1.
 
Exercise Felix Hawk tests WADS’ intercept and identification procedures with a variety of scenarios involving possible hostile aircraft. Residents in the Columbia River area near Goldendale, Brickleton and Arlington may observe F-15, Cessna 182, and C-12 aircraft participating in the exercise between 10:30 a.m. and 12:30 p.m. PDT. These training flights are coordinated with the Federal Aviation Administration and the Continental U.S. North American Aerospace Defense Command Region. The NORAD interceptor aircraft may fly at speeds in excess of 250kts below 10,000 feet.
 
In the event of inclement weather, the exercise will be canceled.
 
These exercises are carefully planned and closely controlled to ensure WADS’ rapid-response capability. WADS has conducted these type exercise flights throughout the western region since the start of Operation Noble Eagle, the command’s response to the terrorist attacks on Sept. 11, 2001.
 
WADS and its eastern counterpart - Eastern Air Defense Sector in Rome, N.Y., are part of CONR, the continental United States geographical component of the bi-national command NORAD. It provides airspace surveillance and control, and directs air sovereignty activities for the CONUS region. CONR and its assigned Air Force assets throughout the country ensure air safety and security against potential air threats.
 
Since Sept. 11, 2001, NORAD fighters have responded to more than 5,000 possible air threats in the United States, Canada and Alaska, and have flown more than 62,500 sorties with the support of Airborne Warning and Control System and air-to-air-refueling aircraft.