Military helicopters fly over Nissan Stadium before the Tennessee Titans face the New Orleans Saints at Nissan Stadium on November 14, 2021 in Nashville, Tennessee.Silas Walker/Getty Images
The Army will review a helicopter flyby conducted before a Nov. 14 NFL game in Nashville.
Video showed helicopters from the 101st Airborne Division’s Combat Aviation Brigade flying low above the crowd.Advertisement
The Army announced it is looking into the planning and execution of the helicopter flyby.
The US Army has launched an inquiry into a low-altitude military flyover by helicopter pilots from Fort Campbell, Tennessee, before an NFL game on November 14.
The flyover took place at Nashville’s Nissan Stadium during the NFL’s “Salute to Service,” an annual pregame celebration usually conducted between week 10 and 12 of the season, before the game itself between the Tennessee Titans and the New Orleans Saints.
Four helicopters from the 101st Airborne Division Combat Aviation Brigade were involved in the flyover above the stadium before the start of the game.
Video from inside the cockpit of one of the AH-64 Apaches, posted on the Titans Twitter account, appeared to show the helicopter flying below the highest point in the stadium. The Apaches were joined by a CH-47 Chinook and a UH-60 Black Hawk.
In a video of the flyover, helicopters appear to fly at eye-level with fans in the upper decks of the stadium.
On Monday, local news outlet WTVF reported that the Federal Aviation Administration was following up with the military to see whether the flyover violated aviation rules. However, a source told Army Times that no representative from the FAA had reached out to the 101st as of Dec. 1.
The 101st Airborne Division told the Army Times that it launched an inquiry into the planning and execution of the pregame flyover by the combat aviation brigade on November 30.
Larry Williams, a retired FAA official, told WTVF that the flyover could’ve been “a disaster.”
“General reaction, yeah, it was unsafe,” Williams told the outlet. “It was very dangerous.”
Low flyovers at sporting events have raised red flags in the past. In 2011, Air Force pilots who participated in a flyover before an NCAA football game were disciplined for flying too low and too fast.
The 101st Airborne Division did not respond to Insider’s request for comment.
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