Recent training exercise triggers panic
PORT ANGELES, Wash. — A colonel from Joint Base Lewis McChord traveled to Port Angeles, Washington apologized to the city Tuesday for an unannounced training exercise that frightened residents last week.
“The FAA was contacted, the coast guard station was contacted, all that coordination was done,” said Col. Charles Hodges. “But the missing piece in this was our communication with your local officials that this type of operation was going on.”
Last Thursday, in the middle of the night, the community awoke to the heavy beating of multiple military helicopters flying over homes with searchlights. Local authorities couldn’t explain it. They had received no notification of any military exercise planned in their area.
“You scared the bejesus out of a whole lot of citizens, and children, and I tell ya, we thought it was an invasion,” said one man at the city council meeting.