YONGSAN GARRISON, South Korea — The Army has suspended flights of the Shadow 200 tactical unmanned aerial vehicle after engine failure caused one to crash around 9 p.m. Thursday night by the Sinchon River near Tongduchon, an Army official said Friday.

No injuries or property damage was reported. Maj. Tamara Parker, 2nd Infantry Division spokeswoman, said the craft's remote operators were able to guide the UAV near the banks of the river running alongside Camp Mobile before the crash.

The Shadow was recovered around 11 p.m. by a U.S. military team. The UAV program manager suspended operations in all areas except the Middle East after two other incidents involving the Shadow this week in Iraq and the National Training Center at Fort Irwin, Calif., Parker said.

“We had over 40 successful flights out of Camp Mobile before this happened,” Parker said. “As a precautionary measure and because safety is always paramount, we won’t be flying until we can determine what the problem is and fix it.”

Thursday’s crash also prompted the cancellation of a media day the Army had scheduled for Tuesday; officials had invited local media to come and watch the Shadow operate.

When it debuted in South Korea in late September, the UAV was touted as having two in-flight safety systems: a simple parachute mechanism that deploys in emergencies and a computerized program that sends it to a predetermined unpopulated military area if the Shadow loses communications with its controllers.

Parker said the parachute did not deploy because the drone was flying under 1,000 feet. At that point, it’s better for operators to guide it for a landing, she said.

Officials from AAI Corp., the Hunt Valley, Md.-based company that manufactures the Shadow, will come to South Korea to investigate the crash, Parker said.

The light, rail-launched drone has a 13-foot wingspan and 60 pounds of surveillance equipment. It flies between 10,000 to 14,000 feet about 30 miles ahead of U.S. forces, according to the military. Officials have said they are flying the craft only on the South Korean side of the Demilitarized Zone.

The Army began receiving the Shadow on Sept. 23, according to AAI Corp., and it has been deployed to Iraq. The first scheduled flight in South Korea was Sept. 26, officials said.

About 50 soldiers at Camp Mobile from the 102nd Military Intelligence Battalion operate the Shadow. The number of UAVs in South Korea can’t be released, but 2nd ID is still receiving and distributing Shadows here so the unit can run operations 24 hours a day when flying resumes, Parker said.

— Joseph Giordono contributed to this report.

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