Arriving flights were halted at Newark Liberty International Airport in New Jersey on Tuesday when a drone was spotted near a neighboring airport, officials said. And one pilot claims that the drone came as close as 30 feet to his aircraft, according to a new report.
Two airplanes headed to Newark reported seeing a drone around 5 p.m. over Teterboro Airport, a smaller airport about 18 miles northeast of Newark, the Federal Aviation Administration told The Associated Press.
The drone was roughly 3,500 feet in the air, according to the reports. The agency said that incoming flights to Newark were briefly halted but resumed after no further sightings were reported.
According to Air Traffic Control audio acquired from LiveATC.Net, pilots reported seeing what “looks like a drone” within 30 feet of an aircraft, ABC News.
“Missed the drone by about 30 feet off our right wing,” the aviator said of the scene, per ABC News. It remains unclear which airline the pilot was flying with when the aircraft allegedly came close to the mysterious drone.
Airport officials tweeted around 7 p.m. that “operations have resumed” after the FAA held arrivals “due to reports of drone activity north of the airport earlier this evening.” Meanwhile, the FAA did not report any delays on their website or social media accounts Tuesday evening.
United Airlines passenger Brett Sosnik tweeted that his airplane had to circle around following the drone reports, and told The AP he “was looking around trying to find a drone in the air when we were closer to landing, but I didn’t see anything.”
“There’s got to be a way to combat that stuff and not have it affect huge airports with such a little piece of technology,” Sosnik said.
England’s Heathrow Airport briefly halted departing flights earlier this month after a reported drone sighting – just three weeks after multiple reports of drone sightings caused travel chaos at nearby Gatwick Airport.
In the U.S., unless the operator gets a waiver from the FAA, drones are not allowed within five miles of most airports, and are not supposed to fly above 400 feet.
The FAA did not immediately respond to Fox News’ request for comment.