The Marine Corps has ordered a pause in flight operations after three accidents in the past six weeks, including Sunday’s incident in which an F-35B fighter jet disappeared after the pilot ejected.
The pause, ordered by Acting Marine Corps Commandant Gen. Eric Smith, will last two days, according to Marine Corps spokesman Maj. Jim Stenger. During this time, all aviation units in the service will review flight operations safety, ground safety, maintenance and flight procedures, and maintaining combat readiness.
Most recently, a debris field located about two hours northeast of Joint Base Charleston was identified as the remains of the Marine Corps F-35B that disappeared after its pilot ejected Sunday after noon, according to the Marine Corps and a defense official with knowledge of the incident. research.
On August 24, a Marine Corps F/A-18 Hornet fighter jet crashed near San Diego. The pilot was killed in the crash and the cause of the crash remains under investigation.
Days later, a Marine Corps MV-22B Osprey crashed during military exercises in Australia, killing three people and leaving five others in serious condition. This accident is also under investigation.
Although there is no indication of any connection between the accidents, all incidents are classified as Class A accidents by the Marine Corps, defined as an incident resulting in one fatality or more than 2.5 million dollars in property damage. The severity of the accidents caused a pause in maritime aviation operations.
“This pause invests time and energy in strengthening the policies, practices and procedures established by the maritime aviation community in the interest of public safety, protecting our Marines and sailors and ensuring that the Marine Corps remains a ready and highly trained fighting force,” the Marine said. Corps said in a statement.