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Latest: Adrift military blimp is on the ground, secure in Pennsylvania

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MUNCY, Pa. — Pennsylvania state police say a military blimp that broke loose in Maryland and drifted over Pennsylvania is on the ground and secure.

Bob Reese, a state police spokesman in Montoursville, says it came down in the area of Muncy, near Williamsport.

The blimp caused about 18,000 power outages. Columbia County chief clerk Gail Kipp says the blimp dragged its tether line, which took out power lines and caused widespread outages.

The unmanned Army surveillance blimp broke loose from its ground tether at a military base and drifted over central Pennsylvania as fighter jets tracked it. The aircraft is known as a Joint Land Attack Cruise Missile Defense Elevated Netted Sensor System and can be used as part of a missile defense system.

It’s not clear how the blimp came loose.

At approximately 12:20 pm EDT today, a Joint Land Attack Cruise Missile Defense Elevated Netted Sensor System (JLENS) surveillance system aerostat detached from its mooring station in Aberdeen Proving Grounds, Maryland, and is currently located approximately northeast of Washington, D.C., over Pennsylvania.

At approximately 12:20 pm EDT today, a Joint Land Attack Cruise Missile Defense Elevated Netted Sensor System (JLENS) surveillance system aerostat detached from its mooring station in Aberdeen Proving Grounds, Maryland, and is currently located approximately northeast of Washington, D.C., over Pennsylvania.

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