18:41 GMT +314 December 2018
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    A US B-1B Lancer bomber taking off. File photo

    'Issue With Ejection Seat Discovered': USAF Grounds All B-1B Bombers

    © AP Photo/ US Air Force, Airman 1st Class Zachary Hada
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    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) - The US Air Force has grounded all B-1B Lancer bombers because of safety concerns after one of the aircraft conducted an emergency landing, Air Force spokesperson William Russell said in a statement on Friday.

    "During the safety investigation process following an emergency landing of a B-1B in Midland, Texas, an issue with ejection seat components was discovered that necessitated the stand down," Russell said.

    The spokesperson noted that the order to ground the B-1 fleet was issued on June 7 and will be effective until all problems are resolved.

    The B-1B is a strategic bomber intended and capable of striking adversary’s targets including with conventional as well as nuclear weapons.

    In April, B-1B warplanes took part in the US-Led offensive against Damascus, reportedly stricking alleged chemical weapons facilities in Syria from the At Tanf district.

    Earlier, Lockheed Martin said in a press release that B-1B bomber took part in a test firing of two long-range anti-ship missiles (LRASM) that eventually was declared successful.

    Last year, Pentagon's contractor announced its plans to deploy LRASM on Air Force B1-B Bombers in 2018 and on Navy Aircraft in 2019.

    The multi-role heavy bomber B-1B reportedly received "baptism of fire" in 1998. Later, this warplane was intensely used during the 2003 war in Iraq.

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    Tags:
    grounding, emergency, bomber, malfunction, investigation, B-1B Lancer, US Air Force, United States
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