Report: Nearly 2/3 of Navy F/A-18 fleet grounded

13News Now has the story

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WVEC) -- Nearly two-thirds of the Navy's F/A-18 Hornets and Super Hornets are grounded right now because of maintenance and funding issues. That word today from "Defense News."

They are the jets flown at Naval Air Station Oceana in Virginia Beach, and which supply strike capability for Navy aircraft carriers.

Defense News says 62 percent of F/A-18's are out of service.

One retired rear admiral and pilot told 13News Now the report is "concerning", and it is a problem which the Navy must fix.

 "I talk to people both publicly and privately, and every navy leader I know says this and I firmly believe in my heart that our New Secretary of Defense Mattis believes that as well, that, we've got to re-set," said Mike Goothousen, who commanded the USS Harry S. Truman at the outset of Operation Iraqi Freedom. "This long protracted war we've been in has taken it's toll on people and equipment."

Defense News lays the blame with Congress'  inability to produce a timely budget for the ninth straight year, relying instead of continuing resolutions, which fund programs at the previous year's levels.

 

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