FAA changes story about F-35 maps

By Burlington Free Press
February 4, 2017

The FAA could have included F-35 sound information, but chose not to due to a pending lawsuit which community members hoped would halt or at least delay the basing of the new jets

[FULL ARTICLE]

F-35 program capital would be better spent on infrastructure

By William H. Sample
December 21, 2016

There is an increasing concern about the F-35 fighter plane (identified by the Department of Defense as “fifth generation”) and its role in military readiness. Having served for three years during the Korean War, I came to appreciate and understand the armed forces’ importance in American life.

Although I did not remain in the service, I have followed military activities which have been conducted over the years (at the direction, sometimes ill-advised, of their civilian leadership) with competence, loyalty, enthusiasm and pride.

As the 21st century started, I became alarmed about the F-35. I recalled Gen. Dwight Eisenhower’s admonition for us to be wary of the excesses of the military/industrial complex. It would be clear to him, I think, that the F-35 project is the military/industrial complex run amok.

[FULL ARTICLE]

Vermont doesn’t need F-35: A Letter to Editor of Burlington Free Press

By Sophie Quest

December 21, 2016

I believe that it’s time to take another careful look at the F-35 warplane (officially called a “weapons system”). Over the 50 year life span of the F-35, America’s newest warplane, we will spend $1.4 trillion on production and maintenance of this one weapons system. That is enough to feed all the world’s hungry ($30 billion per year) and provide everyone on earth with safe drinking water ($11 billion per year).

Even short of provoking war, its production and deployment misdirects vast amounts of precious metals and fossil fuels. This stealth airplane is specifically designed for offensive use. It can carry the B61-12 nuclear weapon deep into foreign territory undetected, making its first-strike use more likely.

[FULL ARTICLE]

Why Didn’t You Ask? A Letter to Editor Seven Days

By Eileen Andreoli
November 2, 2016

It’s patently absurd that reporter Paul Heintz’s second major reflection on Sen. Patrick Leahy’s career in three years does not once mention the extremely controversial F-35 debate in Vermont [“Forty-Two Years a Senator,” October 12].
The F-35 issue has been one of the most divisive of Leahy’s campaign and has tarnished his image for thousands of Vermont residents. Heintz’s piece doesn’t ask any hard questions about Leahy’s decision to trade off the projected damage to the homes, health and safety of thousands of Vermonters for his untenable desire for the basing of the dysfunctional and dangerous F-35s in our residential neighborhoods.
Who is to blame for this glaring omission of concern to many Vermonters? Was it Leahy’s arrogance in refusing to talk about the F-35s or a lack of reporting skills on Heintz’s part?

[Full Article]

S. Burlington leader wants F-35 noise maps before 2019

By Nicole Higgins DeSmet
December 7, 2016

City Manager Kevin Dorn wants better information on how F-35 jet noise will affect neighborhoods surrounding the airport.

“One of the areas of the greatest anxiety and uncertainty in South Burlington escalates with the F-35s arrival,” Dorn said Monday during a meeting at Burlington International Airport. “People are trying to understand where they are going to be in the new line in 2019 and beyond.”

The F-16 Fighting Falcon jets based at the airport are scheduled to be replaced in 2019 by F-35 jets, which are being test-flown elsewhere. The airport’s most recent sound map from 2015 only takes into account current airport noise. Approximately 900 people are living within the current sound mitigation zone designated by the airport.

[FULL ARTICLE]

Fighter jet accidentally drops training bombs on northern Michigan

November 2, 2016

Officials say a mechanical failure is believed to have caused the release of six training bombs and a training missile from a military plane over Michigan’s northern Lower Peninsula.

No one was injured due to the release, which WWTV and WPBN report happened Oct. 25 over Oscoda County.

The training weapons were on a plane heading to Camp Grayling from Selfridge Air National Guard Base in suburban Detroit when they fell off. The Michigan National Guard says the bombs and missile were found in a remote wooded area near Luzerne.

[FULL ARTICLE]

Marine Corps F-35 Caught Fire During Training Flight

By Hope Hodge Seck
November 7, 2016

The Marine Corps is investigating after an F-35B Joint Strike Fighter based out of Beaufort, South Carolina, recently caught fire in mid-air, Military.com has learned.

The incident happened Oct. 27 at Marine Fighter Attack Training Squadron 501, a fleet replacement squadron for the Marine Corps consisting of 20 F-35B aircraft. One of the aircraft experienced a fire in the weapons bay while conducting a training mission over Beaufort, 1st Lt. John Roberts, a spokesman for 2nd Marine Aircraft Wing, told Military.com.

“The aircraft landed safely and there were no injuries sustained,” he said. “An investigation is ongoing and we will provide updates as they are available.”

No estimate of damage caused by the fire was available. The incident was listed by the Naval Safety Center as a Class A mishap, meaning damage totalled $2 million or more on the $100 million aircraft.

[FULL ARTICLE]

What Keeps the F-35 Alive

By David Swanson
November 2, 2016

Imagine if a local business in your town invented a brand new tool that was intended to have an almost magical effect thousands of miles away. However, where the tool was kept and used locally became an area unsafe for children. Children who got near this tool tended to have increased blood pressure and increased stress hormones, lower reading skills, poorer memories, impaired auditory and speech perception, and impaired academic performance.

Most of us would find this situation at least a little concerning, unless the new invention was designed to murder lots of people. Then it’d be just fine.

Now, imagine if this same new tool ruined neighborhoods because people couldn’t safely live near it. Imagine if the government had to compensate people but kick them out of living near the location of this tool. Again, I think, we might find that troubling if mass murder were not the mission.

[FULL ARTICLE]

Sheriff: Pilot should face discipline for crash notification delay

By Morgan True
September 30, 2016

The sheriff who mounted a large-scale emergency response to a plane crash on a Lake Champlain island said the air national guardsmen who did not immediately notify authorities should face consequences.

The accident occurred Sept. 19 around noon on Savage Island, according to Grand Isle Sheriff Ray Allen. However, the crash of the airman’s personal plane wasn’t reported to authorities until six hours later when another pilot, flying over the privately owned island, saw the crashed single-prop Piper PA-11, and radioed the flight tower at Burlington International Airport, Allen said.

Air traffic controllers called Vermont State Police, who called in Allen. Believing he was dealing with an active crash scene, Allen dispatched two boats and called on Milton’s volunteer fire department to join the marine response.

[FULL ARTICLE]

Vermont National Guard Crashes Plane

By Sasha Goldstein
November 16, 2016

The small-plane crash on Savage Island involving two Vermont National Guard airmen in September happened as the pilot practiced an emergency landing, according to a report from the National Transportation Safety Board.

He idled the plane at an altitude of 450 feet to “simulate an engine failure,” but then experienced aerodynamic stall about 15 to 20 feet above the ground before hitting the private island “nose low and left wing down,” the NTSB’s “factual report” recounts. The pilot reported “that he misjudged the wind speed and did not realize he was completing the simulated training maneuver with a tailwind.”

The pilot and a passenger in the back seat were uninjured. The report indicates neither occupant was administered a toxicology test. The Piper PA-11 plane, built in 1947, had substantial damage.

[FULL ARTICLE]

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