Agency: Airline pilot sights drone in Phoenix area

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A drone similar to this one was reported about 12 miles from Sky Harbor International Airport Thursday morning. By Jennifer Thomas A drone similar to this one was reported about 12 miles from Sky Harbor International Airport Thursday morning. By Jennifer Thomas
By Jennifer Thomas By Jennifer Thomas

PHOENIX -- Authorities are investigating an airline pilot's report of spotting a drone about a dozen miles from Phoenix's main airport.

Federal Aviation Administration regional spokesman Ian Gregor said the pilot reported seeing the unmanned aircraft while inbound to Sky Harbor International Airport late Thursday morning.

Details about the drone itself, its altitude and its proximity to the airliner aren't immediately known. However, Gregor says the pilot didn't mention taking evasive action.

Phoenix police investigated the incident.

Sgt. Trent Crump said a police pilot overheard a conversation between the plane and Sky Harbor. The information indicated that the inbound aircraft had spotted a small remote control helicopter near Loop 101 and McDowell Road.

Crump said there is a well-known RC field in that area. Officers went to the location but nothing was found.

The Associated Press reported Wednesday that a growing number of small drone aircraft are turning up in the skies near U.S. airports and airliners and posing a risk of collision.

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