Lakenheath fighter jet's engine fails
RAF LAKENHEATH, England — A Lakenheath fighter jet Tuesday experienced a right-side engine failure while taking off from the base, the 48th Fighter Wing reported Friday.
Emergency crews were mobilized at around 11:45 a.m. when the engine failure occurred, but the pilot landed without injury, said Tech. Sgt. Renee Kirkland, wing spokeswoman.
“The engine data download confirmed a stall,” Kirkland said of the accident.
The incident occurred when the pilot shifted the twin-engine F-15C Eagle into maximum afterburner, Kirkland said. The affected engine was later shown to have exhibited higher-than-normal temperatures during the maneuver, she said.
Though the jet landed without major incident, initial estimates on the damage to the engine, “may exceed $1 million dollars,” Kirkland said.
The cause of the overheating and the nature of damage to the engine were not released Friday, pending a review by a formal safety board, she said.
Word of the accident first came through the Air Force Times on Wednesday, which cited an unspecified Air Force report on the stalled engine. Both the 48th Fighter Wing and U.S. Air Forces in Europe said they had not released information on the incident.
Because no one was injured and members of the general public were not immediately affected, “this was not an incident the base felt the public would be interested in,” Kirkland said.