Monday, June 12, 2017

F-35 grounding at Arizona base extended indefinitely

The decision to ground all F-35 fighters at the Luke Air Force Base in Arizona was extended indefinitely, as special teams of experts struggled to figure out what caused multiple incidents of pilots reporting oxygen deprivation. The decision affects the 55 jets assigned to Luke, the Air Force’s principal training site for F-35 pilots, as well as for pilots and maintenance crews from Australia, Israel, Italy, Japan, the Netherlands and Norway.
This is the second time the Air Force’s F-35A Lightning II jets were grounded since the fifth-generation jet was declared fit for service last year. In September 2016, operations were suspended due to electrical problems inside the fuel tanks. Over 220 operational F-35s have been built and delivered to US and allied militaries. The planes have collectively flown more than 95,000 flying hours, according to Reuters, but the plane has not yet seen combat.