Tue, May 11, 2004
F-14 Downed In March
It could have been much worse. The F-14 that went down off the
coast of San Diego (CA) more than a month ago could have taken its
pilot and RIO down as well. But they were able to eject safely.
Still, investigators are keen to find out why the Tomcat went
down March 29. Now, they'll have their chance. Using an unmanned
mini-sub, the Navy was able to snag the twisted fuselage of the
fighter and bring it to the surface. The empennage, cockpit and
engines had been recovered earlier.
The $62 million F-14 was based at Oceana Naval Air Station in
Norfolk (VA). Its pilot had radioed minutes before ejecting that he
was experiencing engine problems. Examining the wreckage,
investigators will now be able to go much further in pinpointing
exactly what those problems were.
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