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Investigation continues into 'mystery drones' sighted in Colorado

 Photo courtesy: Pixaby/MGN
Photo courtesy: Pixaby/MGN (KKTV)
Published: Jan. 3, 2020 at 8:58 PM MST
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Colorado's governor doesn't know. The FAA doesn't know. Local authorities aren't sure. Multiple drone sightings in northeast Colorado have sparked a lot of questions with very few answers.

Who is operating the pack of drones late at night in Colorado and why?

“Right now we have not identified any discernable criminal incident related to these flying at night,” Office of Emergency Management spokesperson Kevin McElyea

The FAA announced on Twitter Friday it is investigating the sightings in both Colorado and Nebraska. Officials with the agency added any concerned citizens should contact local law enforcement.

11 News isn't aware of any similar sightings in our coverage area. The recent reports the FAA is looking into are tied to an area in northeast Colorado and southwest Nebraska.

These don't appear to be drones used by hobbyists. Law enforcement in Colorado even spent a night in December trying to track the drones.

"We are aware of and have been investigating the multiple reports of drone sightings in the county over the last week," The Phillips County Sheriff's Office posted to Facebook on Dec. 20. "Deputies were out all night this evening along with Yuma County SO tracking these drones. Tonight we tracked over 16 drones between the two counties. We believe that the drones, though startling, are not malicious in nature. The Sheriff's Office is following up on leads and communications with state and federal agencies to pinpoint the exact nature to their activities. As more information comes available, we will keep you informed. If any of these drones fly onto your property or are looking into windows, please call the communications center immediately so a deputy can respond to your location. If you happen to come into possession of one of these drones, please contact the Sheriff's Office so we can conduct a forensic evaluation of the drone to identify the owners and take the appropriate actions."

The federal investigation comes on the heels of an announcement by the FAA, stating the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) announced a proposed rule that would require some drones to be identifiable remotely.

on the announcement from the FAA on the proposed rule that would require some drones to utilize Remote Identification. The proposed rule would apply to all drones that are required to register with the FAA. It wouldn't include recreational drones weighing less than .55 pounds.

One business that operates drones in the area took to social media on Wednesday to share their insight:

Update regarding unknown sUAS (drone) sightings in NE/CO. It’s Not Us. As the Midwest's largest sUAS...

Posted by UAV Recon on Wednesday, January 1, 2020

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