F-35’s Are Grounded

 Thursday in the Upper Valley we experienced what turned out to be a real live sonic boom – not a train crash, propane explosion or all the snow and ice dams falling off the roof at once. I got calls from friends miles north and south wondering about the noisy jolt.

WCAX found the cause was a F-15C at 20 thousand feet that broke the sound barrier, thus creating noise and a sensation felt from Topsham VT to Lyme and Hanover NH. The Massachusetts Air guard said they never intended to cause any “undue concern”.  

So because of the F-15C’s unintended boom I had been thinking of the Burlington Airport and the future F-35 squadron anyway when I read on TPM that the troubled fighter has been grounded.

The Defense Department has suspended flight operations for all three variants of the F-35 as a “precautionary measure,” officials said. The suspension comes after a crack was discovered in an F-35 engine blade, according to Kyra Hawn, a spokeswoman for the F-35 Joint Program Office.

The project is seven years behind schedule and 70% over budget at almost $400 billion, according to Bloomberg

Too soon for any reaction yet from those in and round Burlington who have organized to stop the troubled fighter from arriving in Burlington or word from newly elected adjutant general of the Vermont National Guard, Brigadier Gen. Steven Cray who called the new fighter critically important to the future of the air guard.

Well the F-35 project has also been called “too big to fail” but they are working on it .

6 thoughts on “F-35’s Are Grounded

  1. The entire store shook. Items were wobbling on the shelves and every person in the store instantly stopped moving. Some people were wondering if there had been a propane tank explosion nearby. I thought it was another earthquake, but noticeably larger than the ones we’ve had in the past couple of years.

    Quite impressive, considering the plane was 3.7 miles in the air.  

  2. I was on the summit of Spruce Mt. in Plainfied when I heard it. I thought it was thundersnow or something, but the weather was somewhat calm. Had no idea what it really was until now.

  3. and the reluctance of many S. Burlington residents to welcome it into their midst; there have been a lot of objections to the F-35’s as an unnecessary boondoggle, better suited to conventional wars of the past rather than the asymetrical warfare that has involved the U.S. more recently.

  4. Pentagon Returns New F-35 Jets to Service After Investigation

    The Pentagon lifted its grounding of the new F-35 jet fighter on Thursday after concluding that a turbine blade had cracked on a single plane after it was overused in test operations.

    […] It said the engine in which the blade cracked was in a plane that “had been operated at extreme parameters in its mission to expand the F-35 flight envelope.”


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *