A B-52 Stratofortress bomber flying over the city of New Orleans suffered a mishap when it shed an access panel that fell onto private property. The flyover, part of a salute to the region’s medical professionals, did not result in any injuries — or additional work for said professionals.
On Friday May 1, 2020, Barksdale Air Force Base and Louisiana Air National Guard pilots flew over medical facilities in New Orleans and Baton Rouge to express gratitude for all medical and healthcare professionals who are fighting against Covid-19.
Two B-52 Stratofortress bombers, belonging to the 2nd Bomb Wing escorted by two F-15s belonging to the 159th Fighter Wing based at Naval Air Station Joint Reserve Base New Orleans, La., took part in the flyover.
During the leg flown over New Orleans, one of the B-52s lost lost a panel that fell onto a private property. No one was injured.
The panel “was quickly recovered by Air Force personnel, in partnership with local authorities,” Capt. Chris Sullivan, public affairs chief for the 2nd Bomb Wing told Military Times. “A safety investigation will be conducted, as is the standard with these types of events.”
The shedding B-52 was reportedly built nearly 60 years ago, according to New Orleans 4WWL. The CBS affiliate was the first to report the mishap.
Anyway, it’s not the first time a B-52 of the 2nd BW loses a part. At the end of October 2019, one of the four U.S. B-52 bombers deployed to RAF Fairford, UK, as part of Bomber Task Force Europe 20-1 lost a part that landed in a garden in Brailes, Warwickshire. The object, that did not hurt anybody, was later identified as a wing-tip gear door and was retrieved by 2nd Bomb Wing personnel, in partnership with the UK Ministry of Defense Police.