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It's NOT an invasion! McEntire conducting military exercises

McEntire Joint National Guard Base in Lower Richland will conduct late-night, pre-dawn military exercises this week.

Columbia, SC (WLTX) — The Midlands of South Carolina need not worry about an impending invasion. It's just McEntire Joint National Guard Base conducting late-night and pre-dawn military exercises.

Now through Dec. 14, area residents can expect an increase of military traffic and personnel, including low flying aircraft -- both helicopter and fixed-wing aircraft -- during hours of darkness. Training ammunition and other devices will be employed to make the exercises seem as real as possible.

This is a routine exercise involving soldiers from the US Army's Special Operations Command stationed at Hunter Army Airfield in Georgia. The exercises are to test the soldiers' combat skills with realistic training in order to maintain their high level of readiness.

McEntire's large airfield and more than 2,400 acres of land provide an ideal training location. The base hosted similar special operations training events in April 2015 and September 2016.

The training event is not open to the public.