Hurricane Michael damaged seventeen F-22 jets

There have been reports that up to 17 F-22 stealth fighters were damaged by Hurricane Michael.

The Air Force continues to assess the potential damage to multiple F-22 Raptor fighter jets inflicted last week by Hurricane Michael at Tyndall Air Force Base, Florida.It remains to be seen exactly how many aircraft were impacted and the extent of the damage.

There were three other accidents in the last six months in which an F-22 suffered damage while landing.

160 thoughts on “Hurricane Michael damaged seventeen F-22 jets”

  1. Clearly, those aircraft–one third of the installation’s F-22s–were not operational even after four day’s warning. That seems to fit their reputation of low availability.

    Reply
  2. Clearly those aircraft–one third of the installation’s F-22s–were not operational even after four day’s warning. That seems to fit their reputation of low availability.”

    Reply
  3. Considering Tyndall AFB had not been hit by major hurricane in over 70 years that the overwater ranges are outstanding training areas that the cost of living is very low that the weather is almost uniformly good for training new pilots…what was your arm-chair quarterback/general argument again? You do realize that the Southern states are populated with lots of training (Army Navy AF Marines Coast Guard) bases to take advantage of general good weather low cost of operations and ease of access to good training ranges.Now if you’d like the AF to move a fighter base next to your house we will certainly be happy to make lots of noise day and night just for you.

    Reply
  4. I should have been clearer with my commment; mea culpa. I see your point and don’t mean to deride the air force. Tough decisions must be made on limited budgets, and this was a low-probability event. Still, we’ve been flying wildly expensive aircraft for decades, and we’ll likely continue to do so into perpetuity. As someone who was raised to take care of equipment, I find it surprising that more durable hangers weren’t first on the acquisition list. But as you said, this wouldn’t be an issue if we maintained the aircraft in the first place. All of this – the lack of maintenance, the insufficient hangers, basing them near such weather – indicates a culture that cuts corners. We don’t quite finish the job, and it bites us. Not a military culture; I served and know service members understand these things. It’s our country’s culture. We’ve forgotten how to be responsible and maintain things. That’s an existential threat.

    Reply
  5. Actually, just more 12hr shifts for the maintainers to put them back together. If I had to guess, only 1 or 2 will be so badly damaged that the wing’s maintainers can’t fix them, and those 2 will go to depot for a few months to a year or so while they make new structure. No new F-22s will be built, and no new people will be hired. So aside from making more parts (which were needed anyways), no gain for the MIC.

    Reply
  6. Well, it was kinda out in the open…maintainers were talking about it on Facebook and other sources about how many had to be left behind (from general knowledge of mission capability, parts and labor shortages, etc), so it was an open secret that some had to be damaged from the hurricane. We were guessing anywhere from 12 to 22, so 17 is in the ballpark.

    Reply
  7. Well, you know, they kinda have to “fly” in weather like sunshine, rain, fog, clouds, wind, etc., so that’s not a very clear argument. As for what might be your intended sarcasm that we “left” them to the mercy of the hurricane. Well, that’s not entirely correct either. The aircraft that could not be evacuated were moved into the strongest hangar for the maximum amount of protection possible under the circumstances. As it happened, Michael came ashore in the wrong place at the right windspeed to do some serious damage to the base, and by extension, to the aircraft in the hangars. As for why so many couldn’t fly…blame Obama and his reduction in both $$ and manpower to the AF. We were short over 20,000 maintainers and mission capable rates fell to about 50%, meaning 50% couldn’t fly at any one time due to either no people to fix or no parts to fix. The current president is trying to fix that (along with SecDef), but it takes years to overcome that hurt.

    Reply
  8. Considering Tyndall AFB had not been hit by major hurricane in over 70 years, that the overwater ranges are outstanding training areas, that the cost of living is very low, that the weather is almost uniformly good for training new pilots…what was your arm-chair quarterback/general argument again? You do realize that the Southern states are populated with lots of training (Army, Navy, AF, Marines, Coast Guard) bases to take advantage of general good weather, low cost of operations, and ease of access to good training ranges. Now, if you’d like the AF to move a fighter base next to your house, we will certainly be happy to make lots of noise day and night, just for you.

    Reply
  9. I should have been clearer with my commment; mea culpa. I see your point and don’t mean to deride the air force. Tough decisions must be made on limited budgets and this was a low-probability event. Still we’ve been flying wildly expensive aircraft for decades and we’ll likely continue to do so into perpetuity. As someone who was raised to take care of equipment I find it surprising that more durable hangers weren’t first on the acquisition list. But as you said this wouldn’t be an issue if we maintained the aircraft in the first place. All of this – the lack of maintenance the insufficient hangers basing them near such weather – indicates a culture that cuts corners. We don’t quite finish the job and it bites us. Not a military culture; I served and know service members understand these things. It’s our country’s culture. We’ve forgotten how to be responsible and maintain things. That’s an existential threat.

    Reply
  10. Actually just more 12hr shifts for the maintainers to put them back together. If I had to guess only 1 or 2 will be so badly damaged that the wing’s maintainers can’t fix them and those 2 will go to depot for a few months to a year or so while they make new structure. No new F-22s will be built and no new people will be hired. So aside from making more parts (which were needed anyways) no gain for the MIC.

    Reply
  11. Well it was kinda out in the open…maintainers were talking about it on Facebook and other sources about how many had to be left behind (from general knowledge of mission capability parts and labor shortages etc) so it was an open secret that some had to be damaged from the hurricane. We were guessing anywhere from 12 to 22 so 17 is in the ballpark.

    Reply
  12. Well you know they kinda have to fly”” in weather like sunshine”” rain fog clouds wind etc.”” so that’s not a very clear argument. As for what might be your intended sarcasm that we “”””left”””” them to the mercy of the hurricane. Well”” that’s not entirely correct either. The aircraft that could not be evacuated were moved into the strongest hangar for the maximum amount of protection possible under the circumstances. As it happened Michael came ashore in the wrong place at the right windspeed to do some serious damage to the base and by extension to the aircraft in the hangars. As for why so many couldn’t fly…blame Obama and his reduction in both $$ and manpower to the AF. We were short over 20000 maintainers and mission capable rates fell to about 50{22800fc54956079738b58e74e4dcd846757aa319aad70fcf90c97a58f3119a12} meaning 50{22800fc54956079738b58e74e4dcd846757aa319aad70fcf90c97a58f3119a12} couldn’t fly at any one time due to either no people to fix or no parts to fix. The current president is trying to fix that (along with SecDef)”” but it takes years to overcome that hurt.”””

    Reply
  13. Either someone is an ldiot for not ordering those planes flown out of harms way, or someone is an ldiot for stationing planes that cannot fly on short notice near the gulf coast.

    Reply
  14. We’ve already discussed two viable options: 1) Keep them properly maintained 2) Build weather-appropriate hangers. The question in this thread is not “what to do”; it’s “how to get the money”.

    Reply
  15. No excuse for incompetence, and its not the F-22, many other aircraft were damaged They knew well ahead of time that the hurricane was coming, so they should have moved their 200 million dollar planes away. Even if they couldn’t fly, they could be moved with a crane and a large truck and trailer

    Reply
  16. Either someone is an ldiot for not ordering those planes flown out of harms way or someone is an ldiot for stationing planes that cannot fly on short notice near the gulf coast.

    Reply
  17. We’ve already discussed two viable options: 1) Keep them properly maintained2) Build weather-appropriate hangers. The question in this thread is not what to do””; it’s “”””how to get the money””””.”””

    Reply
  18. No excuse for incompetence and its not the F-22 many other aircraft were damaged They knew well ahead of time that the hurricane was coming so they should have moved their 200 million dollar planes away. Even if they couldn’t fly they could be moved with a crane and a large truck and trailer

    Reply
  19. Or maybe the idihot is you who pays money to the military with taxes while they deliberately lose planes in order to make new solid ones

    Reply
  20. Or maybe the idihot is you who pays money to the military with taxes while they deliberately lose planes in order to make new solid ones

    Reply
  21. The aircraft that could fly, did, to Ohio (now to Virginia). Some of the aircraft were down for inspections that would take at least a week to put together, others were down for parts. Kinda hard to fly without those important bits like hydraulic pumps, generators, engines, etc. If you REALLY want to blame an idiot, Obama is the perfect choice. He cut the funding for spares and personnel. It takes years to overcome those deficiencies and we’re only now making headway. The last portion of your sentence makes no sense. Of course they’re stationed where (some jets) can’t fly on short notice! It’s a training base, for you know, training, because the weather is (usually) pretty nice. No snow, fog, hail, tornadoes, earthquakes, or forest fires. Just some rain every now and then, but mostly sunshine and gentle breezes for newbie pilots to learn how to fly the F-22.

    Reply
  22. Think carefully now…what is the height above sea level for Tyndall AFB? What was the storm surge for hurricane Michael? And you want to build underground shelters? The hangars were rated for Cat 2 hurricanes, which is a typical blow around the panhandle. Building for Cat 4s would easily cost billions across the base, let alone all the other bases in Florida.

    Reply
  23. OK, just exactly how many years of experience in aviation do you have? How many of those in military aviation? I have 36 in military aviation, from flightline to depot. First, the hurricane was expected to miss. Second, it was expected to be a Cat 2, which is well within survivable winds for the hangars. Third, it increased to Cat 4 within 48 hours of striking and at that point there was no way literally and figuratively to move the aircraft out of harm’s way. You just don’t put them on trailers and take up the entire width of the highway while people are evacuating. There weren’t enough trucks, trailers, nor lifting equipment to do that on such short notice. Lastly, the AF has regular inspections and maintenance that require significant dismantling of the jets, such that it takes 1-2 weeks of work to put them together. Others were down for parts. Again, it’s not physically possible to move enough parts in to Tyndall AFB fast enough and have enough maintainers working with enough tools and ground equipment to put all the birds together in 48 hours. So, they rode out the storm as best they could in the strongest hangar. Good news: The damage is not as bad as everyone thinks, although I would bet at least 1 or 2 will have to be sent to depot for extensive repairs. The rest are probably just sheet metal and minor structure issues. Bad news: stealth coatings will probably require complete rework on all of the F-22s, meaning weeks of prep, work, and curing to fix 17 or so aircraft. If this were the F-35, the coatings are a lot more durable and would require less rework.

    Reply
  24. The aircraft that could fly did to Ohio (now to Virginia). Some of the aircraft were down for inspections that would take at least a week to put together others were down for parts. Kinda hard to fly without those important bits like hydraulic pumps generators engines etc. If you REALLY want to blame an idiot Obama is the perfect choice. He cut the funding for spares and personnel. It takes years to overcome those deficiencies and we’re only now making headway.The last portion of your sentence makes no sense. Of course they’re stationed where (some jets) can’t fly on short notice! It’s a training base for you know training because the weather is (usually) pretty nice. No snow fog hail tornadoes earthquakes or forest fires. Just some rain every now and then but mostly sunshine and gentle breezes for newbie pilots to learn how to fly the F-22.

    Reply
  25. Think carefully now…what is the height above sea level for Tyndall AFB? What was the storm surge for hurricane Michael? And you want to build underground shelters? The hangars were rated for Cat 2 hurricanes which is a typical blow around the panhandle. Building for Cat 4s would easily cost billions across the base let alone all the other bases in Florida.

    Reply
  26. OK just exactly how many years of experience in aviation do you have? How many of those in military aviation? I have 36 in military aviation from flightline to depot. First the hurricane was expected to miss. Second it was expected to be a Cat 2 which is well within survivable winds for the hangars. Third it increased to Cat 4 within 48 hours of striking and at that point there was no way literally and figuratively to move the aircraft out of harm’s way. You just don’t put them on trailers and take up the entire width of the highway while people are evacuating. There weren’t enough trucks trailers nor lifting equipment to do that on such short notice. Lastly the AF has regular inspections and maintenance that require significant dismantling of the jets such that it takes 1-2 weeks of work to put them together. Others were down for parts. Again it’s not physically possible to move enough parts in to Tyndall AFB fast enough and have enough maintainers working with enough tools and ground equipment to put all the birds together in 48 hours. So they rode out the storm as best they could in the strongest hangar. Good news: The damage is not as bad as everyone thinks although I would bet at least 1 or 2 will have to be sent to depot for extensive repairs. The rest are probably just sheet metal and minor structure issues. Bad news: stealth coatings will probably require complete rework on all of the F-22s meaning weeks of prep work and curing to fix 17 or so aircraft. If this were the F-35 the coatings are a lot more durable and would require less rework.

    Reply
  27. No, there was NO incompetence on anyone’s part…no matter what you say. And while you don’t “have” to take the wings and stabs off, doing so makes it possible to use highways and go under low overpasses. Not doing so, requires special transportation (think oversize vehicle requirements). Next, there aren’t enough wing cradles to hold the removed wings. They would have to be built, taking weeks to do so. You see, your lack of knowledge of aviation and military aviation is just getting you deeper. Climb out while you can…the experts are in charge and sometimes nothing can be done except ride out the storm (literally and figuratively). I will not give on this…every time you post, I will reply with a better answer than you comprehend.

    Reply
  28. You don’t need to dismantle the jets to move them They didn’t have the equipment on hand because they were incompetent When it formed it was cat 2, and the strength was increasing every hour every meteorologist was saying that it could grow to category 5 this means they had 5 days and 5 nights And there were 22 F-22’s left behind >Experts have said up to 22 of the F-22 Raptors, which cost an estimated $330 million each, could have been left behind in hangars as Hurricane Michael tore through the region. The base, which is home to 55 of the world’s most-advanced fighter jets, flew 33 of the planes away from the storm to Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in Ohio And no the damage is not just the coatings, we don’t know if seawater entered aircraft which would require gutting the airframe and engines, any salt left could cause corrosion of critical parts Any car engine would get wrecked from seawater The reality is that the leadership was incompetent, and dumping the planes in the hangar would be easier than doing actual work.

    Reply
  29. No there was NO incompetence on anyone’s part…no matter what you say. And while you don’t have”” to take the wings and stabs off”” doing so makes it possible to use highways and go under low overpasses. Not doing so requires special transportation (think oversize vehicle requirements). Next there aren’t enough wing cradles to hold the removed wings. They would have to be built taking weeks to do so. You see your lack of knowledge of aviation and military aviation is just getting you deeper. Climb out while you can…the experts are in charge and sometimes nothing can be done except ride out the storm (literally and figuratively). I will not give on this…every time you post”” I will reply with a better answer than you comprehend.”””

    Reply
  30. You don’t need to dismantle the jets to move themThey didn’t have the equipment on hand because they were incompetent When it formed it was cat 2 and the strength was increasing every hour every meteorologist was saying that it could grow to category 5 this means they had 5 days and 5 nights And there were 22 F-22’s left behind>Experts have said up to 22 of the F-22 Raptors which cost an estimated $330 million each could have been left behind in hangars as Hurricane Michael tore through the region. The base which is home to 55 of the world’s most-advanced fighter jets flew 33 of the planes away from the storm to Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in OhioAnd no the damage is not just the coatings we don’t know if seawater entered aircraft which would require gutting the airframe and engines any salt left could cause corrosion of critical parts Any car engine would get wrecked from seawater The reality is that the leadership was incompetent and dumping the planes in the hangar would be easier than doing actual work.”

    Reply
  31. You do know that it is Congress that actually determines the budget and not the President. The President can prepare a suggested budget but it is Congress’s job to pass it. Maybe we need to stop killing weapon projects before the required units are produced. And then complain we ain’t got enough.

    Reply
  32. You do know that it is Congress that actually determines the budget and not the President. The President can prepare a suggested budget but it is Congress’s job to pass it. Maybe we need to stop killing weapon projects before the required units are produced. And then complain we ain’t got enough.

    Reply
  33. You do know that it is Congress that actually determines the budget and not the President. The President can prepare a suggested budget but it is Congress’s job to pass it. Maybe we need to stop killing weapon projects before the required units are produced. And then complain we ain’t got enough.

    Reply
  34. You do know that it is Congress that actually determines the budget and not the President. The President can prepare a suggested budget but it is Congress’s job to pass it. Maybe we need to stop killing weapon projects before the required units are produced. And then complain we ain’t got enough.

    Reply
  35. You do know that it is Congress that actually determines the budget and not the President. The President can prepare a suggested budget but it is Congress’s job to pass it.

    Maybe we need to stop killing weapon projects before the required units are produced. And then complain we ain’t got enough.

    Reply
  36. No, there was NO incompetence on anyone’s part…no matter what you say. And while you don’t “have” to take the wings and stabs off, doing so makes it possible to use highways and go under low overpasses. Not doing so, requires special transportation (think oversize vehicle requirements). Next, there aren’t enough wing cradles to hold the removed wings. They would have to be built, taking weeks to do so. You see, your lack of knowledge of aviation and military aviation is just getting you deeper. Climb out while you can…the experts are in charge and sometimes nothing can be done except ride out the storm (literally and figuratively). I will not give on this…every time you post, I will reply with a better answer than you comprehend.

    Reply
  37. No there was NO incompetence on anyone’s part…no matter what you say. And while you don’t have”” to take the wings and stabs off”” doing so makes it possible to use highways and go under low overpasses. Not doing so requires special transportation (think oversize vehicle requirements). Next there aren’t enough wing cradles to hold the removed wings. They would have to be built taking weeks to do so. You see your lack of knowledge of aviation and military aviation is just getting you deeper. Climb out while you can…the experts are in charge and sometimes nothing can be done except ride out the storm (literally and figuratively). I will not give on this…every time you post”” I will reply with a better answer than you comprehend.”””

    Reply
  38. You don’t need to dismantle the jets to move them They didn’t have the equipment on hand because they were incompetent When it formed it was cat 2, and the strength was increasing every hour every meteorologist was saying that it could grow to category 5 this means they had 5 days and 5 nights And there were 22 F-22’s left behind >Experts have said up to 22 of the F-22 Raptors, which cost an estimated $330 million each, could have been left behind in hangars as Hurricane Michael tore through the region. The base, which is home to 55 of the world’s most-advanced fighter jets, flew 33 of the planes away from the storm to Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in Ohio And no the damage is not just the coatings, we don’t know if seawater entered aircraft which would require gutting the airframe and engines, any salt left could cause corrosion of critical parts Any car engine would get wrecked from seawater The reality is that the leadership was incompetent, and dumping the planes in the hangar would be easier than doing actual work.

    Reply
  39. You don’t need to dismantle the jets to move themThey didn’t have the equipment on hand because they were incompetent When it formed it was cat 2 and the strength was increasing every hour every meteorologist was saying that it could grow to category 5 this means they had 5 days and 5 nights And there were 22 F-22’s left behind>Experts have said up to 22 of the F-22 Raptors which cost an estimated $330 million each could have been left behind in hangars as Hurricane Michael tore through the region. The base which is home to 55 of the world’s most-advanced fighter jets flew 33 of the planes away from the storm to Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in OhioAnd no the damage is not just the coatings we don’t know if seawater entered aircraft which would require gutting the airframe and engines any salt left could cause corrosion of critical parts Any car engine would get wrecked from seawater The reality is that the leadership was incompetent and dumping the planes in the hangar would be easier than doing actual work.”

    Reply
  40. The aircraft that could fly, did, to Ohio (now to Virginia). Some of the aircraft were down for inspections that would take at least a week to put together, others were down for parts. Kinda hard to fly without those important bits like hydraulic pumps, generators, engines, etc. If you REALLY want to blame an idiot, Obama is the perfect choice. He cut the funding for spares and personnel. It takes years to overcome those deficiencies and we’re only now making headway. The last portion of your sentence makes no sense. Of course they’re stationed where (some jets) can’t fly on short notice! It’s a training base, for you know, training, because the weather is (usually) pretty nice. No snow, fog, hail, tornadoes, earthquakes, or forest fires. Just some rain every now and then, but mostly sunshine and gentle breezes for newbie pilots to learn how to fly the F-22.

    Reply
  41. The aircraft that could fly did to Ohio (now to Virginia). Some of the aircraft were down for inspections that would take at least a week to put together others were down for parts. Kinda hard to fly without those important bits like hydraulic pumps generators engines etc. If you REALLY want to blame an idiot Obama is the perfect choice. He cut the funding for spares and personnel. It takes years to overcome those deficiencies and we’re only now making headway.The last portion of your sentence makes no sense. Of course they’re stationed where (some jets) can’t fly on short notice! It’s a training base for you know training because the weather is (usually) pretty nice. No snow fog hail tornadoes earthquakes or forest fires. Just some rain every now and then but mostly sunshine and gentle breezes for newbie pilots to learn how to fly the F-22.

    Reply
  42. Think carefully now…what is the height above sea level for Tyndall AFB? What was the storm surge for hurricane Michael? And you want to build underground shelters? The hangars were rated for Cat 2 hurricanes, which is a typical blow around the panhandle. Building for Cat 4s would easily cost billions across the base, let alone all the other bases in Florida.

    Reply
  43. Think carefully now…what is the height above sea level for Tyndall AFB? What was the storm surge for hurricane Michael? And you want to build underground shelters? The hangars were rated for Cat 2 hurricanes which is a typical blow around the panhandle. Building for Cat 4s would easily cost billions across the base let alone all the other bases in Florida.

    Reply
  44. OK, just exactly how many years of experience in aviation do you have? How many of those in military aviation? I have 36 in military aviation, from flightline to depot. First, the hurricane was expected to miss. Second, it was expected to be a Cat 2, which is well within survivable winds for the hangars. Third, it increased to Cat 4 within 48 hours of striking and at that point there was no way literally and figuratively to move the aircraft out of harm’s way. You just don’t put them on trailers and take up the entire width of the highway while people are evacuating. There weren’t enough trucks, trailers, nor lifting equipment to do that on such short notice. Lastly, the AF has regular inspections and maintenance that require significant dismantling of the jets, such that it takes 1-2 weeks of work to put them together. Others were down for parts. Again, it’s not physically possible to move enough parts in to Tyndall AFB fast enough and have enough maintainers working with enough tools and ground equipment to put all the birds together in 48 hours. So, they rode out the storm as best they could in the strongest hangar. Good news: The damage is not as bad as everyone thinks, although I would bet at least 1 or 2 will have to be sent to depot for extensive repairs. The rest are probably just sheet metal and minor structure issues. Bad news: stealth coatings will probably require complete rework on all of the F-22s, meaning weeks of prep, work, and curing to fix 17 or so aircraft. If this were the F-35, the coatings are a lot more durable and would require less rework.

    Reply
  45. OK just exactly how many years of experience in aviation do you have? How many of those in military aviation? I have 36 in military aviation from flightline to depot. First the hurricane was expected to miss. Second it was expected to be a Cat 2 which is well within survivable winds for the hangars. Third it increased to Cat 4 within 48 hours of striking and at that point there was no way literally and figuratively to move the aircraft out of harm’s way. You just don’t put them on trailers and take up the entire width of the highway while people are evacuating. There weren’t enough trucks trailers nor lifting equipment to do that on such short notice. Lastly the AF has regular inspections and maintenance that require significant dismantling of the jets such that it takes 1-2 weeks of work to put them together. Others were down for parts. Again it’s not physically possible to move enough parts in to Tyndall AFB fast enough and have enough maintainers working with enough tools and ground equipment to put all the birds together in 48 hours. So they rode out the storm as best they could in the strongest hangar. Good news: The damage is not as bad as everyone thinks although I would bet at least 1 or 2 will have to be sent to depot for extensive repairs. The rest are probably just sheet metal and minor structure issues. Bad news: stealth coatings will probably require complete rework on all of the F-22s meaning weeks of prep work and curing to fix 17 or so aircraft. If this were the F-35 the coatings are a lot more durable and would require less rework.

    Reply
  46. No, there was NO incompetence on anyone’s part…no matter what you say. And while you don’t “have” to take the wings and stabs off, doing so makes it possible to use highways and go under low overpasses. Not doing so, requires special transportation (think oversize vehicle requirements). Next, there aren’t enough wing cradles to hold the removed wings. They would have to be built, taking weeks to do so.
    You see, your lack of knowledge of aviation and military aviation is just getting you deeper. Climb out while you can…the experts are in charge and sometimes nothing can be done except ride out the storm (literally and figuratively). I will not give on this…every time you post, I will reply with a better answer than you comprehend.

    Reply
  47. You don’t need to dismantle the jets to move them

    They didn’t have the equipment on hand because they were incompetent

    When it formed it was cat 2, and the strength was increasing every hour every meteorologist was saying that it could grow to category 5 this means they had 5 days and 5 nights

    And there were 22 F-22’s left behind

    >Experts have said up to 22 of the F-22 Raptors, which cost an estimated $330 million each, could have been left behind in hangars as Hurricane Michael tore through the region. The base, which is home to 55 of the world’s most-advanced fighter jets, flew 33 of the planes away from the storm to Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in Ohio

    And no the damage is not just the coatings, we don’t know if seawater entered aircraft which would require gutting the airframe and engines, any salt left could cause corrosion of critical parts

    Any car engine would get wrecked from seawater

    The reality is that the leadership was incompetent, and dumping the planes in the hangar would be easier than doing actual work.

    Reply
  48. The aircraft that could fly, did, to Ohio (now to Virginia). Some of the aircraft were down for inspections that would take at least a week to put together, others were down for parts. Kinda hard to fly without those important bits like hydraulic pumps, generators, engines, etc. If you REALLY want to blame an idiot, Obama is the perfect choice. He cut the funding for spares and personnel. It takes years to overcome those deficiencies and we’re only now making headway.
    The last portion of your sentence makes no sense. Of course they’re stationed where (some jets) can’t fly on short notice! It’s a training base, for you know, training, because the weather is (usually) pretty nice. No snow, fog, hail, tornadoes, earthquakes, or forest fires. Just some rain every now and then, but mostly sunshine and gentle breezes for newbie pilots to learn how to fly the F-22.

    Reply
  49. Think carefully now…what is the height above sea level for Tyndall AFB? What was the storm surge for hurricane Michael? And you want to build underground shelters? The hangars were rated for Cat 2 hurricanes, which is a typical blow around the panhandle. Building for Cat 4s would easily cost billions across the base, let alone all the other bases in Florida.

    Reply
  50. OK, just exactly how many years of experience in aviation do you have? How many of those in military aviation? I have 36 in military aviation, from flightline to depot. First, the hurricane was expected to miss. Second, it was expected to be a Cat 2, which is well within survivable winds for the hangars. Third, it increased to Cat 4 within 48 hours of striking and at that point there was no way literally and figuratively to move the aircraft out of harm’s way. You just don’t put them on trailers and take up the entire width of the highway while people are evacuating. There weren’t enough trucks, trailers, nor lifting equipment to do that on such short notice. Lastly, the AF has regular inspections and maintenance that require significant dismantling of the jets, such that it takes 1-2 weeks of work to put them together. Others were down for parts. Again, it’s not physically possible to move enough parts in to Tyndall AFB fast enough and have enough maintainers working with enough tools and ground equipment to put all the birds together in 48 hours. So, they rode out the storm as best they could in the strongest hangar. Good news: The damage is not as bad as everyone thinks, although I would bet at least 1 or 2 will have to be sent to depot for extensive repairs. The rest are probably just sheet metal and minor structure issues. Bad news: stealth coatings will probably require complete rework on all of the F-22s, meaning weeks of prep, work, and curing to fix 17 or so aircraft. If this were the F-35, the coatings are a lot more durable and would require less rework.

    Reply
  51. Or maybe the idihot is you who pays money to the military with taxes while they deliberately lose planes in order to make new solid ones

    Reply
  52. Or maybe the idihot is you who pays money to the military with taxes while they deliberately lose planes in order to make new solid ones

    Reply
  53. Either someone is an ldiot for not ordering those planes flown out of harms way, or someone is an ldiot for stationing planes that cannot fly on short notice near the gulf coast.

    Reply
  54. Either someone is an ldiot for not ordering those planes flown out of harms way or someone is an ldiot for stationing planes that cannot fly on short notice near the gulf coast.

    Reply
  55. We’ve already discussed two viable options: 1) Keep them properly maintained 2) Build weather-appropriate hangers. The question in this thread is not “what to do”; it’s “how to get the money”.

    Reply
  56. We’ve already discussed two viable options: 1) Keep them properly maintained2) Build weather-appropriate hangers. The question in this thread is not what to do””; it’s “”””how to get the money””””.”””

    Reply
  57. No excuse for incompetence, and its not the F-22, many other aircraft were damaged They knew well ahead of time that the hurricane was coming, so they should have moved their 200 million dollar planes away. Even if they couldn’t fly, they could be moved with a crane and a large truck and trailer

    Reply
  58. No excuse for incompetence and its not the F-22 many other aircraft were damaged They knew well ahead of time that the hurricane was coming so they should have moved their 200 million dollar planes away. Even if they couldn’t fly they could be moved with a crane and a large truck and trailer

    Reply
  59. I should have been clearer with my commment; mea culpa. I see your point and don’t mean to deride the air force. Tough decisions must be made on limited budgets, and this was a low-probability event. Still, we’ve been flying wildly expensive aircraft for decades, and we’ll likely continue to do so into perpetuity. As someone who was raised to take care of equipment, I find it surprising that more durable hangers weren’t first on the acquisition list. But as you said, this wouldn’t be an issue if we maintained the aircraft in the first place. All of this – the lack of maintenance, the insufficient hangers, basing them near such weather – indicates a culture that cuts corners. We don’t quite finish the job, and it bites us. Not a military culture; I served and know service members understand these things. It’s our country’s culture. We’ve forgotten how to be responsible and maintain things. That’s an existential threat.

    Reply
  60. I should have been clearer with my commment; mea culpa. I see your point and don’t mean to deride the air force. Tough decisions must be made on limited budgets and this was a low-probability event. Still we’ve been flying wildly expensive aircraft for decades and we’ll likely continue to do so into perpetuity. As someone who was raised to take care of equipment I find it surprising that more durable hangers weren’t first on the acquisition list. But as you said this wouldn’t be an issue if we maintained the aircraft in the first place. All of this – the lack of maintenance the insufficient hangers basing them near such weather – indicates a culture that cuts corners. We don’t quite finish the job and it bites us. Not a military culture; I served and know service members understand these things. It’s our country’s culture. We’ve forgotten how to be responsible and maintain things. That’s an existential threat.

    Reply
  61. Actually, just more 12hr shifts for the maintainers to put them back together. If I had to guess, only 1 or 2 will be so badly damaged that the wing’s maintainers can’t fix them, and those 2 will go to depot for a few months to a year or so while they make new structure. No new F-22s will be built, and no new people will be hired. So aside from making more parts (which were needed anyways), no gain for the MIC.

    Reply
  62. Actually just more 12hr shifts for the maintainers to put them back together. If I had to guess only 1 or 2 will be so badly damaged that the wing’s maintainers can’t fix them and those 2 will go to depot for a few months to a year or so while they make new structure. No new F-22s will be built and no new people will be hired. So aside from making more parts (which were needed anyways) no gain for the MIC.

    Reply
  63. Well, it was kinda out in the open…maintainers were talking about it on Facebook and other sources about how many had to be left behind (from general knowledge of mission capability, parts and labor shortages, etc), so it was an open secret that some had to be damaged from the hurricane. We were guessing anywhere from 12 to 22, so 17 is in the ballpark.

    Reply
  64. Well it was kinda out in the open…maintainers were talking about it on Facebook and other sources about how many had to be left behind (from general knowledge of mission capability parts and labor shortages etc) so it was an open secret that some had to be damaged from the hurricane. We were guessing anywhere from 12 to 22 so 17 is in the ballpark.

    Reply
  65. Well, you know, they kinda have to “fly” in weather like sunshine, rain, fog, clouds, wind, etc., so that’s not a very clear argument. As for what might be your intended sarcasm that we “left” them to the mercy of the hurricane. Well, that’s not entirely correct either. The aircraft that could not be evacuated were moved into the strongest hangar for the maximum amount of protection possible under the circumstances. As it happened, Michael came ashore in the wrong place at the right windspeed to do some serious damage to the base, and by extension, to the aircraft in the hangars. As for why so many couldn’t fly…blame Obama and his reduction in both $$ and manpower to the AF. We were short over 20,000 maintainers and mission capable rates fell to about 50%, meaning 50% couldn’t fly at any one time due to either no people to fix or no parts to fix. The current president is trying to fix that (along with SecDef), but it takes years to overcome that hurt.

    Reply
  66. Well you know they kinda have to fly”” in weather like sunshine”” rain fog clouds wind etc.”” so that’s not a very clear argument. As for what might be your intended sarcasm that we “”””left”””” them to the mercy of the hurricane. Well”” that’s not entirely correct either. The aircraft that could not be evacuated were moved into the strongest hangar for the maximum amount of protection possible under the circumstances. As it happened Michael came ashore in the wrong place at the right windspeed to do some serious damage to the base and by extension to the aircraft in the hangars. As for why so many couldn’t fly…blame Obama and his reduction in both $$ and manpower to the AF. We were short over 20000 maintainers and mission capable rates fell to about 50{22800fc54956079738b58e74e4dcd846757aa319aad70fcf90c97a58f3119a12} meaning 50{22800fc54956079738b58e74e4dcd846757aa319aad70fcf90c97a58f3119a12} couldn’t fly at any one time due to either no people to fix or no parts to fix. The current president is trying to fix that (along with SecDef)”” but it takes years to overcome that hurt.”””

    Reply
  67. Considering Tyndall AFB had not been hit by major hurricane in over 70 years, that the overwater ranges are outstanding training areas, that the cost of living is very low, that the weather is almost uniformly good for training new pilots…what was your arm-chair quarterback/general argument again? You do realize that the Southern states are populated with lots of training (Army, Navy, AF, Marines, Coast Guard) bases to take advantage of general good weather, low cost of operations, and ease of access to good training ranges. Now, if you’d like the AF to move a fighter base next to your house, we will certainly be happy to make lots of noise day and night, just for you.

    Reply
  68. Considering Tyndall AFB had not been hit by major hurricane in over 70 years that the overwater ranges are outstanding training areas that the cost of living is very low that the weather is almost uniformly good for training new pilots…what was your arm-chair quarterback/general argument again? You do realize that the Southern states are populated with lots of training (Army Navy AF Marines Coast Guard) bases to take advantage of general good weather low cost of operations and ease of access to good training ranges.Now if you’d like the AF to move a fighter base next to your house we will certainly be happy to make lots of noise day and night just for you.

    Reply
  69. We’ve already discussed two viable options:

    1) Keep them properly maintained
    2) Build weather-appropriate hangers.

    The question in this thread is not “what to do”; it’s “how to get the money”.

    Reply
  70. No excuse for incompetence, and its not the F-22, many other aircraft were damaged

    They knew well ahead of time that the hurricane was coming, so they should have moved their 200 million dollar planes away.

    Even if they couldn’t fly, they could be moved with a crane and a large truck and trailer

    Reply
  71. I should have been clearer with my commment; mea culpa.

    I see your point and don’t mean to deride the air force. Tough decisions must be made on limited budgets, and this was a low-probability event. Still, we’ve been flying wildly expensive aircraft for decades, and we’ll likely continue to do so into perpetuity. As someone who was raised to take care of equipment, I find it surprising that more durable hangers weren’t first on the acquisition list. But as you said, this wouldn’t be an issue if we maintained the aircraft in the first place.

    All of this – the lack of maintenance, the insufficient hangers, basing them near such weather – indicates a culture that cuts corners. We don’t quite finish the job, and it bites us. Not a military culture; I served and know service members understand these things. It’s our country’s culture. We’ve forgotten how to be responsible and maintain things. That’s an existential threat.

    Reply
  72. Actually, just more 12hr shifts for the maintainers to put them back together. If I had to guess, only 1 or 2 will be so badly damaged that the wing’s maintainers can’t fix them, and those 2 will go to depot for a few months to a year or so while they make new structure. No new F-22s will be built, and no new people will be hired. So aside from making more parts (which were needed anyways), no gain for the MIC.

    Reply
  73. Well, it was kinda out in the open…maintainers were talking about it on Facebook and other sources about how many had to be left behind (from general knowledge of mission capability, parts and labor shortages, etc), so it was an open secret that some had to be damaged from the hurricane. We were guessing anywhere from 12 to 22, so 17 is in the ballpark.

    Reply
  74. Well, you know, they kinda have to “fly” in weather like sunshine, rain, fog, clouds, wind, etc., so that’s not a very clear argument. As for what might be your intended sarcasm that we “left” them to the mercy of the hurricane. Well, that’s not entirely correct either. The aircraft that could not be evacuated were moved into the strongest hangar for the maximum amount of protection possible under the circumstances. As it happened, Michael came ashore in the wrong place at the right windspeed to do some serious damage to the base, and by extension, to the aircraft in the hangars. As for why so many couldn’t fly…blame Obama and his reduction in both $$ and manpower to the AF. We were short over 20,000 maintainers and mission capable rates fell to about 50%, meaning 50% couldn’t fly at any one time due to either no people to fix or no parts to fix. The current president is trying to fix that (along with SecDef), but it takes years to overcome that hurt.

    Reply
  75. Considering Tyndall AFB had not been hit by major hurricane in over 70 years, that the overwater ranges are outstanding training areas, that the cost of living is very low, that the weather is almost uniformly good for training new pilots…what was your arm-chair quarterback/general argument again? You do realize that the Southern states are populated with lots of training (Army, Navy, AF, Marines, Coast Guard) bases to take advantage of general good weather, low cost of operations, and ease of access to good training ranges.
    Now, if you’d like the AF to move a fighter base next to your house, we will certainly be happy to make lots of noise day and night, just for you.

    Reply
  76. Clearly, those aircraft–one third of the installation’s F-22s–were not operational even after four day’s warning. That seems to fit their reputation of low availability.

    Reply
  77. Clearly those aircraft–one third of the installation’s F-22s–were not operational even after four day’s warning. That seems to fit their reputation of low availability.”

    Reply

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