Losses and Aviation Safety

F-22 Pilot that Belly Landed his Raptor last April at NAS Fallon Took Off with Incorrect Data

The investigation also found that the F-22 pilot prematurely retracted the landing gear and that day’s flight brief was inadequate

As we have already reported on Apr. 13, 2018 an F-22A Raptor belonging to the 3rd Wing from Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson (JBER), Alaska, was involved in a serious accident at Naval Air Station (NAS) Fallon where the stealth fighter was deployed for an exercise.

According to Air Force Magazine, the F-22 pilot took off with incorrect data and prematurely retracted the aircraft’s landing gear causing the Raptor to land on its belly and skid to a stop.

The F-22 pilot took off from Fallon for a Topgun graduation exercise. The pilot rotated the aircraft — bringing the nose up — at 120 knots and as the aircraft indicated its wheels were leaving the ground, the pilot retracted the landing gear. Immediately after landing gear retracted, the aircraft “settled” back on the runway with the doors fully closed.

With its tailhook bouncing off the ground, the F-22 slid about 6,514 feet until coming to a rest. Once it came to a stop, the pilot egressed the cockpit and there was no damage to other property. The U.S. Air Force (USAF) did not disclose a cost estimate to the damage.

The Accident Investigation Board found that the pilot had incorrect Takeoff and Landing Data for the conditions at Fallon — the pilot’s lineup card stated 136 knots indicated airspeed knots for rotation and 163 knots for full takeoff while that day’s conditions called for 143 knots for rotation and 164 knots for takeoff.

The investigation also found that the pilot prematurely retracted the landing gear and that day’s flight brief was inadequate.This model is available in multiple sizes from AirModels – CLICK HERE TO GET YOURS.

Additionally, the F-22 community has “organizational overconfidence” in the equipment, formal training is not adequate, and there is an organizational acceptance of an incorrect technique of taking off in the F-22, the board found.

The incident was one of two involving Elmendorf Raptors within about a week. On April 6, an F-22 suffered engine failure and was forced to land at Tyndall Air Force Base (AFB), Fla.

Noteworthy that of Apr. 13, is not the first crash-landing for a U.S. Air force (USAF) F-22 Raptor. On May 31, 2012 in fact F-22A # 02-4037 was badly damaged when it failed to lift off during a touch-and-go at Tyndall AFB.

The aircraft returned to service in March after a six-year repair job.

This print is available in multiple sizes from AircraftProfilePrints.com – CLICK HERE TO GET YOURS. F-22A Raptor 192nd Fighter Wing, 149th Fighter Squadron, FF/04-4082 – Langley AFB, VA – 2014

Photo credit: U.S. Air Force and Air Force amn/nco/snco Facebook page

Artwork courtesy of AircraftProfilePrints.com

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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