Why Have There Been So Many Helicopters In Western Sydney?
Worried western Sydney residents have taken to social media after an army training exercise sent a number of low-flying helicopters across the region.
Facebook users in Penrith, St Clair and Quakers Hill posted in community pages, alarmed at the influx of choppers and wondering what had happened.
"Does anyone know why the police helicopters keep circling?" one member asked while another reported seeing "four black helicopters with only the one at the back with its lights on".
The aircraft are being flown in the Sydney and Singleton regions as part of a scheduled, month-long training exercise running from October 30 to November 23, 2017, according to a letter from the Australian Defence Force.
"This routine training is designed to provide a realistic test of ADF skills, working together with State and Federal agencies in the form of emergency response scenarios," the notice, which was mailed to affected neighbourhoods, reads.
"The exercise will involve Army helicopters. Flights will occur in all conditions across urban and rural areas during the afternoon and evening, generally concluding by 11.30pm.
"Some unavoidable noise may be noticeable for short periods, due to low-flying helicopters."
According to the official government website, the training will see the army responding to simulated terrorist scenarios and will see military Black Hawk helicopters, vehicles and soldiers carrying weapons and tactical equipment.
Blank ammunition and other pyrotechnics may also be used.
The leaflet goes on to assure residents that they "shouldn't be concerned if they hear or see these activities occurring" and that the training "poses no danger to the public".
More information about the ongoing training can be found here.