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F-35 Fleet Is Grounded by US Air Force Over Ejection-Seat Worries

  • Temporary groundings also are affecting other military planes
  • Explosive cartridges to propel seats from planes may be flawed
F-35A Lightning II 
F-35A Lightning II Photographer: Staff Sgt. Codie Trimble/US Air Force
Updated on

The US Air Force has grounded its fleet of F-35 jets temporarily, citing a potentially faulty component in the ejection seat that could endanger pilots in an emergency, a concern that also grounded other types of military planes that are used in training.

The issue involves the explosive cartridges inside ejection seats that help propel the seat -- and the pilot -- from the plane during an emergency, Alexi Worley, spokeswoman for the Air Force’s Air Combat Command, said in a statement Friday.