Low flying helicopters over Cork City prompt amusement and speculation

The defence forces confirmed the aircraft were taking part in a military exercsie.
Low flying helicopters over Cork City prompt amusement and speculation

The defence forces did not provide any details of the helicopters that took part in the operation. File picture.

Perhaps it is a sign of the times but the sight of three helicopters flying low over Cork City last night attracted plenty of curiosity. 

With lockdown in place leaving many hard up for entertainment, an evening's disruption was most welcome and three helicopters performing a number of low altitude patrols over the city was just the ticket. 

The three helicopters were later seen in other parts of Cork county and the Munster region. 

Some reacted with some typical local humour to the scene although the presence of coronavirus was not far from some good-natured conspiratorial speculation. 

The skies over Cork have been quiet with reduced international travel and the familiar thrum of aircraft taking off and landing from Cork Airport overhead was a nice reminder of busier times. 

The defence forces confirmed that the aircraft were involved in a "routine military exercise" and did not provide any details of the helicopters that were taking part. 

"Óglaigh na hÉireann are currently conducting a routine military exercise in Co Cork. This exercise involves the use of a number of Defence Forces assets including several aircraft. Operational details are not being released," said a spokesperson for the defence forces.

It may be some time before the skies above the city are busy again after Cork Airport announced the dates of its 10-week closure this autumn to facilitate a complete upgrade of its main runway.

Management has now confirmed the airport will close on September 10 and reopen on November 22 in time for what it is hoped will be a busy Christmas period.

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