New Pentagon guidelines allow U.S. military to destroy and track drones

If you're thinking about flying a recreational or commercial drone near a military base, you might want to think again. That is, if you don't want to get it shot down.

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WVEC) -- If you're thinking about flying a recreational or commercial drone near a military base, you might want to think again. That is, if you don't want to get it shot down.

ABC News reports that classified policy documents were issued in early July for how the military can counter drone threats.

Pentagon spokesman Navy Capt. Jeff Davis said Monday, "The new guidance does afford of the ability to take action to stop these threats and that includes disabling, destroying and tracking."

The Navy tells 13News Now that recently, a U.S. Navy pilot flying an F/A-18 Hornet observed an unmanned aircraft system, UAS quad-copter in the landing pattern at Naval Air Station Oceana.

In a release, the base said, "This sighting is alarming, as these types of UAS, or drones, are capable of causing significant damage to aircraft in the event of a mid-air collision. It is important that those who own and fly UAS be aware of the rules governing their use."

Important among these are the prohibitions against operating recreational or commercial drones within five miles of NAS Oceana, or within two miles of Naval Auxiliary Landing Field Fentress in Chesapeake.

Additionally, the Oceana release says:

"The public should also know that using a UAS to take unauthorized photos or videos of military or naval installations or equipment is a federal crime, punishable by fine and/or imprisonment of up to one year."

As for what method the military might use to take out a drone, they're not saying.

"We will not discuss our force protection measures, nor our rules for use of force, but we do have the inherent right and responsibility to self-defense," the Navy release said. Adding, "The U.S Navy is committed to the safety and security of our installations, equipment and our personnel, and that of our surrounding neighbors."

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