Device to scare birds causes Guard base lockdown - FOX 8 WVUE New Orleans News, Weather, Sports

Device to scare birds causes Guard base lockdown

AP Photo AP Photo

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) - Authorities say a device used to scare birds away from an airport caused the lockdown of a Mississippi Air National Guard base when the noise was mistaken for gunfire.

Adding to the confusion Wednesday, the 172nd Airlift Wing had been preparing for a drill this week that would have simulated a gunman on the base in Flowood.

The unit is near the Jackson-Medgar Wiley Evers International Airport and uses its runways.

Airport CEO Dirk Vanderleest says the device is similar to starter pistol and fires something like a bottle rocket. He says a buzzard was flying near the runway as a plane approached.

Guard spokesman Tim Powell says the noise was mistaken for gunshots, which prompted the lockdown and sent law enforcement and first responders rushing to the scene.

(Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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