Reports indicate that US B-52H Stratofortress nuclear-capable strategic bomber has been spotted flying towards St. Petersburg, Russia’s second-largest city after Moscow, according to Lenta.ru media.
B-52H Stratofortress strategic bomber of the U.S. Air Force, assigned to the 2nd Bomb Wing, Barksdale Air Force Base, Louisiana, flew for over one and a half an hour near the borders of Russia in the Kaliningrad and Leningrad regions.
The plane took off from the British Fairford airbase, headed for the Kaliningrad region, then proceeded to Estonian airspace and cruised more than a half an hour near the Leningrad region closer than 21 miles (35 km) and 59 miles (95 km).
The deployment of strategic bombers to the U.K. helps exercise RAF Fairford as United States Air Forces in Europe’s forward operating location for bombers.
On 15 March, air traffic network Plane Radar has reported that a US B-52H Stratofortress large-payload multirole strategic bomber aircraft practiced a mock attack on a Russian naval base in the Baltic Sea region.
A strategic bomber of the U.S. Air Force approached to within about 99 miles (160 km) of the border with the Russian exclave of Kaliningrad on Friday, according to flight data from air traffic network Plane Radar.
“16:25 Moscow time. A US Air Force Boeing B-52H Stratofortress strategic bomber, registration number 61-0009, engaging in imitation of the bombing of the base of the Russian Baltic Fleet,” Plane Radar announced on Twitter on 15 March.
As to date, B-52s have been modified for low-level flight, conventional bombing, extended-range flights and transport of improved defensive and offensive equipment — including ballistic and cruise missiles that can be launched hundreds of miles from their targets.
B-52H Stratofortress is capable of carrying and launching nuclear weapons.
According to the current information, the bomber can fly at high subsonic speeds at altitudes of up to 50,000 feet and can be armed with nuclear-tipped cruise missiles or a conventional payload of up to 70,000 pounds.
Приближался к Санкт-Петербургу🇷🇺 на расстояние 191 км, в воздушном пространстве Эстонии🇪🇪. pic.twitter.com/1cp9Ue6ik5
— PlaneRadar (@ua4wiy_) 18 March 2019