The United States Air Force grounded the entirety of its B-2 stealth bomber fleet following a fire on one of the planes earlier on December 10th and causing an emergency landing.
According to Fox News, "The multi-role bomber, which was first unveiled in 1989, is capable of delivering both conventional and nuclear munitions. The 20-aircraft fleet is based out of Whiteman Air Force Base in Missouri."
After the emergency landing, the Air Force said they plan to inspect each individual B-2 aircraft out of a fleet comprising fewer than 20 B-2s. An undisclosed malfunction caused the fire, which occurred mid-flight. There were no injuries and the fire was extinguished before landing.
The B-2 stealth bombers
The Associated Press reports that "none of the strategic aircraft will perform flyovers at this years' college bowl games." The plan was set to fly over the 2023 Rose Bowl Game and Rose Parade. In a statement from the 509th Bomb Wing, an Air Force plane will still appear at the games in the shape of the B-1 Lancer.
The B-21 Raider was already set to replace the B-21, which had been in use since 1989. The B-21 will be deployed next year.
The B-2, "along with the B-52 Stratofortress, the air leg of the nation’s nuclear triad," the AP reports. The B-2 had been "regularly deployed" in the Indo-Pacific and had completed recent flyovers in Europe as a "show of force."
In September, a different B-2 also had to make an emergency landing. That aircraft had a hydraulic failure and its landing gear collapsed "The bomber’s left wing dragged for about a mile before the aircraft came to a halt, resulting in at least $10 million in damage to the aircraft."According to Insider, in 2019, the Air Force tweeted that they would "bomb millennials into oblivion" via the B-2 if they tried to infiltrate Area 51. The Air Force later apologized for the tweet.
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