The U.S. Navy will conduct a Field Carrier Landing Practice (FCLP) detachment operation at Naval Air Station Key West’s Boca Chica Field with more than 260 Navy personnel and 16 E/A-18G Growler aircraft deployed from Naval Air Station Whidbey Island, Washington, Nov. 5-9 and Nov. 12-15.
The FCLPs are scheduled during NAS Key West’s published flight hours, 7 a.m. – 10 p.m.
“This type of training is required and provides aviators with realistic carrier landing practice,” said Naval Air Station Key West Commanding Officer Capt. Bobby Baker. “It’s high intensity for the aviators, Sailors working the field and even the local communities who will notice an increase in noise and flight activity.”
Jets from Electronic Attack Squadron (VAQ) 129 will conduct the training. This training is required for all Navy and Marine Corps aviators prior to actual landing practice on at-sea aircraft carriers. Boca Chica Field has two runways that are painted and lighted to simulate the deck of an aircraft carrier – a third runway is painted but not lit.
“The field carrier landing practice conducted at NAS Key West is mandatory training for maintaining the proficiency of aircrews,” said Baker. “To be effective, these warfighters must prove their landing abilities ashore for day and night flight operations before heading to the aircraft carrier.”
Residents in the neighborhoods around Boca Chica Field will notice an increase in jet noise during the FCLP training periods.
“We try to get this information out to everyone as early as possible so residents can plan accordingly,” said Baker.
NAS Key West maintains a noise concern hotline at 305-293-2166. The Public Affairs Office can be reached at 305-293-2027.