The White House on Monday defended the shootdowns of three unidentified objects in as many days even as it acknowledged that it had no indication they were intended for surveillance in the same manner as the high-altitude Chinese balloon that traversed American airspace earlier this month. White House National Security Council spokesperson John Kirby says the U.S. shot down the three aerial objects that were flying over North American airspace “out of an abundance of caution.” Kirby said while there is “no specific reason to suspect that they were conducting surveillance of any kind,” the White House “couldn’t rule that out.” The three objects, including one shot down Sunday over Lake Huron, were traveling at such a low-altitude as to pose a risk to civilian air traffic, Kirby said. “You want to err on the side of safety here,” he said. Though the origins and purpose of the three objects most recently shot down are still unknown, their mere presence in American air space ratcheted up concerns among American national security officials in light of a massive balloon that the U.S. believes was geared explicitly for surveillance and that was shot down over the Carolina coast on Feb. 4 by U.S. fighter jets. Kirby said the Biden administration is “laser focused” on determining the nature and focus of the objects that were shot down. Kirby also flatly denied that the U.S. is flying surveillance aircraft over China, insisting there are “no U.S. surveillance aircraft…in Chinese airspace.” China says more than 10 U.S. high-altitude balloons have flown in its airspace during the past year without its permission.

A person on a moped died in a collision near Holly Hill on Monday night, according to S.C. Highway Patrol Master Trooper Mitchell Ridgeway.

The collision occurred at 9:02 p.m. on S.C. Highway 310 near Bayview Street.

A 2020 Daix moped was traveling east on S.C. Highway 310 when it attempted to turn left into a private drive. A 2003 Honda sedan was traveling west when it struck the moped.

The moped operator died at the scene. The driver of the Honda was not injured.

The collision being investigated.

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