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US Navy grounds Super Hornets and Growlers after 'incident' at NAS Whidbey Island

20 December 2016
An unspecified ground-incident involving a Growler electronic attack aircraft at Whidbey Island has prompted the US Navy to ground all of its Super Hornet and Growler aircraft while it investigates. Source: US Navy

The US Navy (USN) has grounded its fleet of Boeing F/A-18E/F Super Hornet and EA-18G Growler combat aircraft while it investigates the cause of a ground incident on 16 December that injured two flight-crew.

The incident at Naval Air Station (NAS) Whidbey Island in Washington state saw an EA-18G Growler from Electronic Attack Squadron (VAQ) 132 experience an unspecified "on-deck emergency" that required both crew members to be airlifted to hospital, a USN statement said.

As a consequence of the incident, the USN has ordered a temporary suspension of all Super Hornet and Growler flight operations while the Naval Air Systems Command and Boeing conduct their investigation. Exceptions to this grounding order will be made on a case-by-case basis.

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