Defense

August 21, 2013

Navy sailors, divers find, salvage downed F-16C

Divers assigned to Mobile and Diving Salvage Unit (MDSU) 2, Company 2-4, are lowered into the water during diving operations off the coast of Virginia to recover the wreckage of an F-16 Fighting Falcon that crashed Aug. 1. The divers are embarked aboard the Military Sealift Command rescue and salvage ship USNS Grasp (T-ARS-51) recovering the wreckage.

 

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. – Navy sailors and divers from Mobile Diving and Salvage Unit 2, embarked aboard the Navy’s rescue and salvage ship USNS Grasp (T-ARS-51), found and salvaged a downed F-16 aircraft off the coast of Virginia, Aug. 6-20.

The downed aircraft was one of two F-16 fighter jets from the 113th Wing, D.C. Air National Guard that clipped wings mid-air during a routine training mission 35 miles southeast of Chincoteague, Va., Aug. 1.

The other aircraft involved in the incident was able to fly back to Joint Base Andrews in Md. without further incident.

The MDSU 2 Area Search Platoon 201 departed Virginia Beach Aug. 6 and began seven days of search operations to find the aircraft. Staging out of Chincoteague Island, Va., the team of six Navy Sailors, led by Operations Specialist Chief William Earp, conducted both towed and autonomous side-scan sonar searches of more than 10 square miles of ocean bottom, before locating the F-16 approximately three miles from the point of the mid-air incident.

On Aug. 14, the MDSU 2 ASP found and recovered aircraft debris using a remote operated vehicle. With the crash site located, the ASP turned over the operation to Navy Divers from Mobile Diving and Salvage Company 2-4 who arrived on Grasp after a small-boat transfer.

The MDS Company 2-4 divers began surface-supplied diving operations Aug. 16 and recovered part of the aircraft from the ocean floor by using a basket to raise large pieces of the jet from a depth of 107 feet. The next day, the divers recovered the flight data recorder, commonly referred to as the “black box.”
 

Divers assigned to Mobile and Diving Salvage Unit (MDSU) 2, Company 2-4, are lowered into the water during diving operations off the coast of Virginia to recover the wreckage of an F-16 Fighting Falcon that crashed Aug. 1. The divers are embarked aboard the Military Sealift Command rescue and salvage ship USNS Grasp (T-ARS-51) recovering the wreckage.

 
Diving operations ended Aug. 19 after recovering key debris. The remnants of the aircraft and the flight data recorder are being transferred to Joint Base Andrews for examination by the Air Force’s Safety Investigation Board.

“I’d like to thank the Sailors, Navy Divers and Civilian Mariners for their cooperation and expertise at locating and recovering the aircraft, including the flight data recorder,” said Brig. Gen. Marc Sasseville, commander, 113th Wing, D.C. Air National Guard. “These key items will help us to understand what happened and what we can do to prevent a similar occurrence.”

MDSU 2 is an expeditionary mobile unit homeported at Joint Expeditionary Base, Little Creek-Ft. Story in Virginia Beach, Va., and has successfully conducted salvage operations to support TWA Flight 800, Swiss Air Flight 111, the space shuttles Challenger and Columbia, the I-35W Mississippi River bridge collapse in Minnesota, the Civil War ironclad USS Monitor, and recovery of a down military jet off the coast of Italy.

USNS Grasp is crewed by U.S. Navy’s Military Sealift Command, which operates approximately 110 noncombatant, U.S. Navy civilian-crewed ships that replenish U.S. Navy ships, conduct specialized missions, strategically preposition combat cargo at sea around the world, and move military cargo and supplies used by deployed U.S. forces and coalition partners.

 




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 

Headlines January 23, 2015

News: Two Marines identified in deadly California helo crash - Two Marine Corps officers killed when their helicopter crashed during a training exercise in the Southern California desert were remembered Jan. 25 as talented pilots. Greek F-16 crashes in Spain during NATO exercise - Ten people died Jan. 26 after a Greek air force F-16 jet crashed...
 
 

News Briefs January 26, 2015

Navy wants to increase use of sonar-emitting buoys The U.S. Navy is seeking permits to expand sonar and other training exercises off the Pacific Coast, a proposal raising concerns from animal advocates who say that more sonar-emitting buoys would harm whales. The Navy now wants to deploy up to 720 sonobuoys about 12 miles off...
 
 
Air National Guard photograph by SSgt. Annie Edwards

ANG conducts air refueling training with NATO allies in Germany

Air National Guard photograph by SSgt. Annie Edwards A NATO E-3A AWACS aircraft approaches a Utah Air National Guard KC-135R Stratotanker for air refueling during a training flight over Germany on Jan. 13, 2015. Nearly 30 airme...
 

 
Air Force photograph by SrA. Armando A. Schwier-Morales

Ramstein Airmen train with French air force

Air Force photograph by SrA. Armando A. Schwier-Morales Two U.S. Air Force pilots and a French air force navigator discuss the route to the drop zone during a simulated low-level drop Jan. 21, 2015, at Orleans – Bricy Air...
 
 

Marines receive first F-35C Lightning II carrier variant

The first F-35C Lightning II, carrier variant, for the U.S. Marine Corps touched-down on the flight line at Eglin Air Force Base, Fla., Jan. 13, from the Lockheed Martin plant in Fort Worth, Texas, to begin training in support of carrier-based operations. U.S. Marine Lt. Col. J.T. Ryan, Marine Fighter Attack Squadron 501 detachment commander...
 
 

VA announces single regional framework under MyVA initiative

The Department of Veterans Affairs announced Jan. 26 that it is taking the first steps under the MyVA initiative to realign its many organizational maps into one map with five regions to better serve Veterans. The new regions under the MyVA alignment will allow VA to begin the process of integrating disparate organizational boundaries into...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>