The $6.7 Million Dollar Streamer

One unlucky crew chief failed to capture the nose landing gear pin streamer during removal and allowed it to be sucked into the right engine of an F-22A Raptor during operations last October at Hill AFB, Utah, according to a just-released Air Combat Command accident investigation report. The Raptors, plus air and ground crews were in Utah last fall for the first deployment of an operational F-22 squadron, the 27th Fighter Squadron, Langley AFB, Va. Damage to the right engine of the fighter came out to approximately $6.7 million. The pilot had started the engines, when the crew chief realized the nose landing gear pin was still in the left engine, so he told the pilot to shut down that engine. After he pulled the pin, the still-operating right engine sucked in the flowing streamer. ACC investigators cited an “inadequate and incorrect” technical order as the main culprit.