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Delaware Wing

Serving the needs of Delaware’s communities

Ice storms in Delaware have repeatedly called the state’s CAP wing into action. In 1993 20 members helped coordinate relief efforts after an ice storm left many residents stranded and without power. They assisted trapped motorists and manned a county emergency operations center, and ground teams volunteered to transport medical personnel to area hospitals. In 1998 CAP members again braved icy conditions and freezing temperatures to bring relief to those left in the cold and dark.

The wing responded to the devastation caused by Hurricane Floyd in September 1999. The Category 4 hurricane slammed into the mid-Atlantic states, causing 57 fatalities and billions of dollars in damage. CAP was there to transport state officials, photograph damage, observe flood stages and monitor evacuation routes. The wing also maintained a presence at the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, held at the 120,000-seat Dover International Speedway. Members tackled the demanding task of coordinating pilots and planes in the air in addition to communication vehicles on the ground. They monitored traffic patterns with two to four planes in the sky at a time, depending on crowd turnout, but kept a distance from the track itself because of its highly restricted airspace.

During other times, the wing has helped facilitate healthy traffic flow by keeping an eye out for downed trees, major accidents, flooding and high traffic volumes.

An aerial shot taken in 2008 from a plane belonging to the Delaware Wing shows Dover International Speedway on race day. All CAP aircraft used to monitor traffic for NASCAR events are required to maintain an altitude of 3,000 feet and a radius of 3 miles of the track to reduce noise and distraction. Photo by 1st Lt. Gary Emeigh, Delaware Wing
An aerial shot taken in 2008 from a plane belonging to the Delaware Wing shows Dover International Speedway on race day. All CAP aircraft used to monitor traffic for NASCAR events are required to maintain an altitude of 3,000 feet and a radius of 3 miles of the track to reduce noise and distraction. Photo by 1st Lt. Gary Emeigh, Delaware Wing
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