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Old 10-24-2007, 10:53 AM   #4  
1Seat 1Engine
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Joined APC: Aug 2006
Position: 737 Right
Posts: 1,133

If they're counting accidents at Balad, then no freakin' wonder the rate has gone up.

The place is a fatigue nightmare. F-16 pilots are regularly logging 70-100 hours a month there. It's not like you can get any decent sleep there, especially if you're on the night schedule (out-going artillery, controlled detonations, incoming rockets/mortars).

The flying is so boring there that after five months, all I knew how to do was takeoff/land, orbit in a right hand pattern, and work the TGP.

Add to that that we're landing the airplane much heavier than we ever have on a consistent basis. Many of the accidents in the last couple years have been caused by failed tires or gear in the landing phase. I blame this on high landing speeds/weights because we're usually landing with unexpended weapons and high fuel weights because of limited divert options and forced landing time windows. Not to mention the FOD covered roller coaster that they call a runway.

The 16's are getting older, no doubt, but if they're counting losses in Iraq in their stats, that article is meaningless. You're going to have higher losses in a combat operation no matter how old the jets are.
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