Was Lack of Sleep a Major Factor?: According to the Wilmington (Del.) News-Journal, the investigation into the April 3 crash of a C-5 airlifter just short of the runway at Dover AFB, Del., may have bypassed a significant factor—lack of sleep among the crew members. A summary of the official accident investigation report released last week put the primary blame on crew failures to follow standard emergency procedures and, in particular, using a dead throttle. The News-Journal reports that investigators also noted that “limited sleep” might have contributed to the accident. Retired Air Force pilots talking with the newspaper believe the Air Force should look at the C-5 throttle arrangement, which, unlike other aircraft, has no lock down position for out of service throttles.
The Air Force overall reduced its size by 120 aircraft in fiscal year 2021, but kept about the same number of fighter, bomber and attack aircraft, according to data supplied by the service. The F-35 fleet saw the biggest increase while the B-1B bomber fleet saw the largest decline.