Australian Growler Plane Catches Fire While Take-off During US Red Flag Exercise

  • Our Bureau
  • 02:47 PM, January 29, 2018
  • 2037
Australian Growler Plane Catches Fire While Take-off During US Red Flag Exercise
Australian Growler Plane Catches Fire During US Red Flag Exercise

An Australian Growler Electronic Warfare jet caught fire after an aborted takeoff during Exercise Red Flag at a US military base in Nevada on Sunday, due to a reported engine failure.

All Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF) personnel were reported as safe and the Defence Department said there were "no serious injuries" following the incident.

The Nellis Air Force Base Public Affairs Department said the "incident" happened about 10:45am on Saturday (local time). "The aircraft (EA-18G Growler) was required to abort its take-off and subsequently caught fire. However all personnel are safe," the statement said.

It comes days after another Australian military jet — a giant KC-30A tanker aircraft narrowly avoided a deadly collision with two British fighters over Iraq because of pilot inexperience and a broken fuelling system.

The EA-18G Growler is a modified electronic warfare variant of the F/A-18F Super Hornet designed to jam enemy radar systems. Australia has bought 12 of the Boeing-built aircraft at a lifetime cost of about $3.7 billion — or $300 million each.

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