Losses and Aviation Safety

Bird strike causes more than $2 million in damages to USMC F-35B

Initial assessments indicated the bird strike caused the F-35B more than $2 million in damages, making it a Class A mishap.

On May 7 a U.S. Marine Corps (USMC) F-35B with Marine Aircraft Group 12, 1st Marine Aircraft Wing operating out of Iwakuni, Japan had a bird strike.

The F-35B was forced to abort the take-off, according to Major Eric Flanagan, a spokesman for 1st Marine Aircraft Wing.

The aircraft “safely taxied off the runway,” but initial assessments indicated the high-tech stealth fighter suffered more than $2 million in damages, making it a Class A mishap, Flanagan told Marine Corps Times in an emailed statement.

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The incident is currently under investigation and a complete damage assessment is underway.

The F-35B bird strike is USMC second Class A mishap in less than one week.

On May 3 a Marine F/A-18 out of Mountain Home Air Force Base, Idaho, made an emergency landing due to an engine bay fire.

No one was injured in the F/A-18 incident.

The Navy classifies a Class A mishap as an accident resulting in $2 million or more in damages or an incident that results in death or total disability.

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Photo credit: U.S. Marine Corps

Dario Leone

Dario Leone is an aviation, defense and military writer. He is the Founder and Editor of “The Aviation Geek Club” one of the world’s most read military aviation blogs. His writing has appeared in The National Interest and other news media. He has reported from Europe and flown Super Puma and Cougar helicopters with the Swiss Air Force.

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