Report: Air Force F-22 skids on its belly during botched takeoff
By: Stephen Losey 3 hours ago14
A picture posted on the unofficial Facebook page Air Force amn/nco/snco shows an F-22A Raptor after skidding on its belly during a takeoff gone wrong. (Courtesy of Air Force amn/nco/snco)
An F-22A Raptor from Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson skidded on its belly during a botched takeoff at Naval Air Station Fallon in Nevada Friday, according to a report on The Drive.
The 3rd Wing at Elmendorf, in Alaska, was unable to confirm details about the incident to Air Force Times. But The Drive reported Saturday that the mishap possibly took place when the Raptor was taking off and retracted its landing gear too early, causing it to slam down on the runway and skid to a stop.
The pilot did not sustain major injuries, The Drive reported.
The F-22 at Naval Air Station Fallon in Nevada being lifted off its belly by a crane. (Courtesy of Air Force amn/nco/snco)
The unofficial Facebook page Air Force amn/nco/snco posted pictures of the mishap and quoted an unnamed source as saying the Raptor’s left engine flamed out during takeoff, and that the pilot raised the gear in the air shortly before realizing the engine was dead.
The incident comes at a time when increasing attention is being paid to the military’s growing rate of aviation mishaps.
A Military Times investigation found that manned warplane accidents have spiked almost 40 percent since 2013, when the budget cuts required under sequestration took effect.
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The Air Force’s mishap rate grew 16 percent between 2013 and 2017. Much of that was due to a rise in Class C incidents, which are less-serious but still concerning because they could be a “canary in the coalmine,” foreshadowing more serious mishaps in the future.
Air Force Chief of Staff Gen. Dave Goldfein earlier in April ordered a review of the service’s increase in Class C mishaps.