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Press Releases

Press Release | Jan. 22, 2014

NORAD exercise planned for Washington, D.C.

TYNDALL AIR FORCE BASE, Fla. – The North American Aerospace Defense Command and its geographical component, the Continental United States NORAD Region (CONR), will conduct exercise Falcon Virgo 14-04 Wednesday night and into Thursday morning in the National Capital Region, Washington, D.C. Flights are scheduled between midnight and 2 a.m. (EST).


The exercise is a series of training flights held in coordination with the Federal Aviation Administration, the National Capital Region (NCR) Coordination Center, the Joint Air Defense Operations Center (JADOC), Civil Air Patrol, U.S. Coast Guard and CONR’s Eastern Air Defense Sector.

Due to inclement weather, this exercise was postponed from the original date. If inclement weather continues, the exercise will take place the following evening. If bad weather persists, officials will then make a decision to postpone or cancel the exercise.

Exercise Falcon Virgo is designed to hone NORAD’s intercept and identification operations and operationally test the NCR Visual Warning System to certify newly assigned Command and Control personnel at the JADOC. Civil Air Patrol aircraft, Air Force F-16s and a U.S. Coast Guard MH-65 Dolphin helicopter will participate in the exercise.

These exercises are carefully planned and closely controlled to ensure CONR’s rapid response capability and provide the opportunity to practice procedures for responding to airspace violations prior to special security events.

CONR provides air defense for several special security events throughout the year, including the State of the Union Address, the Super Bowl, United Nations General Assemblies, and other events as required.

NORAD conducts exercise flights of this nature throughout the U.S. and Canada since the start of Operation Noble Eagle, the command’s response to the terrorist attacks on Sept. 11, 2001.In the event of inclement weather, the exercise will occur the following evening. If bad weather continues, officials will decide to postpone or cancel the exercise.

As the Continental United States geographical component of the bi-national command NORAD, CONR provides airspace surveillance and control, and directs air sovereignty activities for the CONUS region.  CONR and its assigned Air Force and Army assets throughout the country ensure air safety and security against potential air threats. 

Since Sept. 11, 2001, CONR fighters have responded to more than 5,000 possible air threats in the United States and have flown more than 62,500 sorties with the support of Airborne Warning and Control System and air-to-air-refueling aircraft.