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Homeland Security Drones Resume Flying After Crash

Mon, 02/10/2014 - 9:59am
Alicia A. Caldwell, Associated Press

Local, state and federal agencies ranging from local sheriff's offices to the North Dakota Army National Guard have borrowed unmanned surveillance drones from the Homeland Security Department nearly 700 times in the past three years. (AP Photo/U.S. Customs and Border Protection)Washington (AP) — The Homeland Security Department is back to flying drones along the country's borders more than a week after one crashed into the Pacific Ocean.

Customs and Border Protection spokesman Michael Friel said an initial investigation concluded that the drone crashed due to a generator failure. The department is making mechanical upgrades to the remaining drones in the fleet to safeguard against future malfunctions.

The $12 million surveillance drone was flying a border security mission along the southern border when the generator failed and the Texas-based crew decided to down it in the ocean about 20 miles southwest of San Diego.

The crashed aircraft was one of 10 drones used by the government to patrol the borders from the air.

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