The Japan Air Self-Defense Force (JASDF) has grounded its fleet of Lockheed Martin F-35A Lightning II Joint Strike Fighters after one of the aircraft crashed into the Pacific Ocean off Aomori Prefecture, northern Japan, on 9 April.
The incident marks the first crash of an operational F-35A in the world, according to the Ministry of Defense (MoD) in Tokyo, with Japanese Defence Minister Takeshi Iwaya telling reporters on 10 April that the JASDF’s remaining 12 F-35As will be grounded for the time being until the safety of the aircraft is confirmed.
An investigative committee at the Air Staff Office has been tasked with determining the cause of the crash to prevent a similar incident.
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