USAF T-38C Talon Crashes at Laughlin AFB – Fifth crash In 12 Months. One pilot has died in a T-38 training aircraft killing one pilot and sending a second to a hospital, Tuesday night at Laughlin Air Force Base in Texas.
An Air Force T-38 Talon training jet went down at 7:40 p.m. local time Tuesday at Laughlin Air Force Base, Texas, officials said on Laughlin’s official Facebook page.
The names of the pilots are being withheld pending next-of-kin notification, an Air Force statement said.
The incident was the fifth T-38 crash in a year.
- On Sept. 11, a T-38C aircraft crashed shortly after takeoff from Sheppard Air Force Base near Wichita Falls, Texas. Both pilots were in stable condition following the accident.
- On Aug. 17, another T-38 crashed in the vicinity of Vance Air Force Base near Enid, Okla. The pilot ejected before the crash.
- On May 23, two pilots ejected safely from a T-38 before it crashed in the vicinity of Columbus Air Force Base, Miss.
- On Nov. 20, Capt. Paul J. Barbour was killed and Capt. Joshua Hammervold was injured in a T-38 crash at Laughlin Air Force Base.
Late last month, the Air Force removed three top commanders at Laughlin, citing concerns about dangerous and threatening behavior at the major pilot training installation, the service’s Air Education and Training Command announced.
The chief of AETC, Lt. Gen. Steven Kwast, fired Col. Charles Velino, commander of the 47th Flying Training Wing, and the commanders of its operations group and flying training squadron citing “chronic leadership failures” raised in an investigation into widespread officer misconduct within the unit, an Air Force statement said.
The statement did not name the commanders of the operations group or the flying training squadron.
Boeing was awarded a $9.2 billion contract in September to build T-X aircraft to replace the Air Force’s T-38C Talons, which have been in service for 57 years. The contract calls for 350 of the new aircraft to be ready for full operational deployment by 2034.
The base says a board of officers will be convened to investigate the cause of the crash.
Northrop T-38C Talon is a “twin-engine, high-altitude, supersonic jet trainer used in a variety of roles,” including preparing pilots “for front-line fighter and bomber aircraft
Article Source: www.stripes.com