Two days ago, we reported that there was a catastrophic failure causing a fire aboard an F-35A down at Eglin AFB in Florida. While we’ve not seen any initial response as to what caused the fire, we have seen reports from Military.com that state the aircraft should be returning to flight today; Wednesday, June 24. Although the USAF and USMC decided to stand down while the aircraft was evaluated, the USN did not cease operations of the F-35C while the initial investigation was underway.
While the cause of the accident is still unknown at this point, this is a highly isolated incident and the first of it’s kind since the F-35 went operational in 2006. They’re going to be investigating the reason for this unusual “Class A Mishap” (Class A Mishaps are deemed as anything causing loss of life or more than $2,000,000 damage) using subject matter experts with F-35 and aviation backgrounds. The full reports (barring classified or personnel data) should be available within 60-90 days with the initial assessment coming as soon as 30 days. The reason this is being called a Class A mishap is because any damage to the aircraft’s highly sensitive stealth coating costs hundreds of thousands of dollars to repair or replace.
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