The U.S. Air Force has begun its preliminary investigation into the cause of an F-22A Raptor crash one week ago at Naval Air Station Fallon, said a spokesman at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson near Anchorage, Alaska.
Master Sgt. Joshua Jasper from the 673d Air Base Wing Public Affairs said in a media release Tuesday night USAF officials don’t know at this time whether the incident on the main runway was a result of the landing gear, engine malfunction or another mechanical problem. No injuries were reported on the pilot, whose name was not released. Jasper said the pilot safely exited the aircraft.
The F-22A is assigned to the 90th Fighter Squadron, 3rd Wing at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson. The F-22 skidded to a stop on the north-south runway shortly after takeoff. The pilot was at NAS Fallon performing an adversary role at the Naval Aviation Warfighting Development Center (NAWDC) or Top Gun.
As previously reported, a social media site shows photographs of the USAF jet on its belly with the landing gear retracted.
“We can confirm that the aircraft was later hoisted into a position where the landing gear could be extended and locked,” Jasper said. “The aircraft was then towed to a position where damage and repairs can be evaluated.”
Because the aircraft belongs to another military branch, NAS Fallon is providing assistance and support, but the investigation belongs to the USAF.