At approximately 2 p.m., MDT, Oct. 28, the North American Aerospace Defense Command directed F-16 aircraft to investigate a general aviation aircraft that was not in communication with air traffic control and had entered the Temporary Flight Restriction area surrounding Bullhead City, Ariz., without proper clearance.
The TFR was in place because President Donald Trump, aboard Air Force One, was travelling to Nevada and Arizona as part of his reelection campaign. The president spent the night in Las Vegas, before travelling to Bullhead City for a campaign rally. Later in the day, he will hold rallies in Phoenix before heading to Miami.
The violating aircraft was non-responsive to initial intercept procedures, but established radio communications after NORAD aircraft deployed signal flares. The violating aircraft was escorted out of the restricted area by the NORAD aircraft without further incident.
Operation Noble Eagle is the name given to air defense missions in North America. NORAD is a bi-national command focused on the defense of both Canada and the United States.
NORAD provides airspace control for Temporary Flight Restriction areas. TFRs are airspace restrictions established by the Federal Aviation Administration. TFRs are published and available to all aviation users. Once TFRs become active, they are administered by the FAA. NORAD closely coordinates its air defense activities with the FAA and responds as necessary to aircraft that violate the restricted area.