Polis willing to use state plane again to investigate mystery drones on eastern Plains

DENVER — Gov. Jared Polis says he is willing to use a state-owned plane again to investigate drones flying over the eastern Plains.

On Thursday, Centura Health confirmed the pilot of a Flight for Life helicopter on its way to Fort Morgan reported a drone flying approximately 100 feet below the aircraft.

Following his State of the State address Thursday, Polis shared his concerns.

“We don’t want to wait until there’s some accident. We’ve got to figure out what this is,” Polis said. “The state can support the local governments and yes, we can try to use our state plane to identify if there’s a threat or where it’s coming from.”

On Tuesday, the Colorado Division of Fire Prevention and Control confirmed the agency was involved in a joint operation Monday night to investigate the source of the drones.

“The joint operation found no verification of suspicious drones,” Caley Fisher, a spokesperson for the department, said Tuesday.

Fisher would not confirm whether the state agency used a state-owned Multi-Mission Aircraft, which is frequently used to assist in wildfire detection and providing “near real time” information about the fire to ground crews.

However, Polis confirmed Thursday a state-owned plane has been used at least once to investigate the situation.

The Colorado Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Management said Thursday afternoon that it encourages the public to continue to report suspicious activity, but urged people not to try to take down drones or approach suspected drone operators.

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