For the second time in less than a month, an F/A-18C Hornet suffered an engine fire aboard an aircraft carrier. On April 11, the pilot of the Hornet shown bursting into flames brought the plane aboard the USS Carl Vinson after an engine caught fire following a touch and go landing. He shut that engine down and brought the plane home with the working engine and, well, you see what happened upon landing. No word yet on the cause of the fire. We’re glad that no one was injured in this incident. Well done to the firefighting team.
Keep in mind that on March 30, an engine exploded on Marine Corps Hornet about to take off from the USS John C. Stennis, injuring 11 deck crew and wrecking the aircraft.
This latest Hornet fire comes the same week that top Navy and Marine Corps aviation officials said that keeping the older F/A-18s in safe flying condition was one of their most serious challenges. The jets, built in the 1980s and 1990s, were designed to fly for 6,000 hours. However, the services are trying to keep them in service through 10,000 flight hours due to delays in the delivery of their replacement, the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter.