EGLIN AIR FORCE BASE — Residents may experience aircraft noise and GPS unavailability April 1-6 when the 53rd Weapons Evaluation Group conducts boat operations in the Gulf of Mexico and Choctawhatchee Bay.
Ground-based navigation and electronic devices or smart phone apps that rely on GPS may be affected in the vicinity of Eglin Air Force Base during tests from 8 a.m. to 12 p.m. Normal GPS reliability will resume once testing is complete each day. Those in the area are strongly encouraged to plan activities accordingly.
Each morning, fighter aircraft will release munitions between 8 a.m. and 12 p.m. approximately 20 nautical miles south of Destin over the Gulf of Mexico. The test will be conducted within a cleared range safety area which includes boat surveillance. Notices to mariners will be issued prior to missions, and flyers will be handed out at the local marina.
In the afternoons between 1 p.m. and 5 p.m., boats traveling in formation will transverse between the Mid-Bay Bridge and the Highway 331 Bridge, to include 10 to 20 miles south of Destin over the Gulf of Mexico. The boat formation will be used as visual targets by military aircraft flying over the area. No weapons or ammunition will be involved with this boat formation.
Please be advised that some boats will have mock-up, fake deck guns and rocket launcher tubes. The boats will also use marine flares as visual markers.
These operations are part of the 53rd Wing's Weapon System Evaluation Program. For more information, please contact the Team Eglin public affairs office at 882-3931 or the 53rd Wing public affairs office at 882-0423.