Omaha airport officials say lanterns that float away are pretty, but they imperil airplanes

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OMAHA, Nebraska — Omaha airport officials say lit sky lanterns that float into the sky are pretty, but they also pose a danger to airplanes.

Tim Schmitt is operations manager at Omaha's Eppley Airfield, and he says concerns about the colored lanterns rise on the Independence Day weekend. Schmitt told Omaha television station KETV ( ) that the lanterns can be ingested by aircraft engines or end up littering runways.

Schmitt says that on the Fourth of July last year, airport workers picked up more than 100 of the sky lanterns on the airfield.

Schmitt is asking people not to release the lanterns within five miles of the airport, which sits on the east side of Omaha, next to the Missouri River.

Information from: KETV-TV,

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