Israel grounds Skylark drones fleet after two crashes in West Bank

World Defense & Security News - Israel
Israel grounds Skylark drones fleet after two crashes in West Bank
Israel's army said Monday that its Skylark drones fleet was grounded after two Skylarks have fallen down over the Israeli-occupied West Bank. The Skylark unmanned aerial vehicles crashed in territories of the Palestinian city of Bethlehem and the district of Hebron.
Israel grounds Skylark drones fleet after two crashes in West Bank 640 001Soldiers of the Skylark I-LE unit spent a week in the Negev Desert learning how to operate the Skylark drone
(Credit: Cpl. Zev Marmorstein/IDF)
A military spokesperson specified no reason for the crash but said in a statement that the "the circumstances are under investigation," adding that troops on the ground retrieved the remains of the drones.

According to the army, no sensitive information was compromised as a Skylark would automatically shut down if an accident occurs, disabling retrieval of information.

In the wake of the incident, General Officer Commanding Army Headquarters Maj. Gen. Kobi Barak has ordered all Skylarks to be grounded pending review.

The crashes were the latest in a series of crashes of Skylarks over the past years.

In March, a Skylark fell in the Shuja'iyya neighborhood in the northern Gaza Strip. The military said the drone accidentally crashed as it was employed in a "routine operational activity." In May, a Skylark crashed in southern Lebanon.

The Skylark, manufactured by Israel's Elbit company, is Israel Defense Forces' smallest drone. The army uses it to collect tactical information in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip as well as in Lebanon.


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