Air Force will soon allow more airmen to fly drones

An MQ-1 Predator unmanned aerial vehicle takes off from Creech Air Force Base, Nev., May 11, for a training sortie over the Nevada desert. STAFF SGT. BRIAN FERGUSON / U.S. AIR FORCE

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An MQ-1 Predator unmanned aerial vehicle takes off from Creech Air Force Base, Nev., May 11, for a training sortie over the Nevada desert. STAFF SGT. BRIAN FERGUSON / U.S. AIR FORCE

The Air Force will soon set a milestone opening the door to enlisted airmen to become drone pilots.

For the first time, a selection board will pick from a field of 185 applicants for the jobs, according to the Air Force.

The Air Force Personnel Center is expected to release its choices at the end of this February.

A high tempo of operations has put drone operations in demand around the globe.

The Air Force says the additional airmen will boost intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance efforts.

The Ohio National Guard’s 178th Wing at Springfield Air National Guard Base is among units involved in drone operations.

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