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Drones the First to Arrive in Haiti

by christian on January 15, 2010

Our boy Colin Clark at DoD Buzz participated in an interview this morning with the vice commander of the Air Force’s 480th ISR wing at Langley AFB.

Looks like they’re spooling up the Soviet missile snooping U-2 for some surveillance flights over Haiti. No, they’re not looking for Hugo Chavez’s secret stash of SS-3s. Instead the U-2 will use its SYERS-2 multispectrum imagery capability to detect damage to buried fuel lines, water mains and possible chemical spills.

But it also seems that Global Hawk has made some flybys as early as the 13th, one day after the horrific earthquake that killed an estimated 50,000.

The spy drone reportedly was sent to assess infrastructure for US military and relief deployments…

A story on the base’s web site quoted Lt. Col. Mark Lozier, operations officer with the 12th Reconnaissance Squadron: “In effect, you get to look at what we know is damaged, and what we know is still serviceable. We can take a look at airfields to assess, right now, whether or not we will be able to get airlift in there with aid. We don’t have to wait for a ground team to get in there and make on site decisions.”

Makes you wonder if being a SEAL or Recon Marine is getting to be a lonely job since GH is doing the eyeballing those guys used to do. Although the Air Force also sent a special tactics team to assess airfields and set up air traffic control for incoming US mil flights.

Anyway, we’re covering the relief operations and military deployments with the entire Military​.com, DoD Buzz and DT team and will dispatch the latest in technology and policy-related information here.

PS — Our own Jamie McIntyre of Line of Departure is scheduled to do a flyover of Haiti in an Air Force OC-135 on Saturday. So be sure to check here and LOD for the latest on that mission.

– Christian

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