Saturday, March 7, 2009

Inspections of A-10 Thunderbolts continue

Air Force Times
By Bruce Rolfsen - Staff writer
Posted : Friday Mar 6, 2009 16:11:57 EST

The Air Force continues to inspect and repair the wings of A-10 Thunderbolts.

As of the end of February, 322 of the service’s 356 Warthogs had been inspected for wing cracks, according to the service. Of the checked jets, 214 returned to flying while 108 await or are undergoing repairs.

Another 34 jets had not been inspected but were allowed to continue flying because they were considered the least likely to have cracks.

“We remain on schedule to complete the fleet-wide inspections and initial repairs by June,” Lt. Col. Jim Marx, deputy commander of the 538th Aircraft Sustainment Group, Hill Air Force Base, Utah, told Air Force Times. Marx added that all A-10s deployed to Afghanistan have been repaired.

The groundings and inspections began Oct. 3 after inspections at Ogden Air Logistics Center, where A-10s go through depot-level repairs, uncovered unexpected cracks. The cracks were in wheel trunnions, sections not frequently checked. While A-10s were designed to last for 8,000 flying hours, many have passed the 10,000 hour mark.

Starting in late 2010, the Air Force hopes to replace the aging A-10 wings with new wings.


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