B-1B Surpasses 10,000 Flight Hours

A B-1B bomber operating with the 34th Expeditionary Bomb Squadron in Southwest Asia on June 12 eclipsed 10,000 flight hours, becoming the first B-1 to accumulate this many hours. The aircraft, airframe number 85-0087, reached this milestone during a 14-hour mission in support of coalition operations in Afghanistan. “The recent 10,000-hour milestone demonstrates the B-1 has evolved into a multi-purpose weapon system that has come of age over the battlefields of Iraq and Afghanistan as the backbone of the combat air forces,” said Lt. Col. Steve Beasley, 34 EBS commander. He credited the skill of B-1 maintainers for the aircraft’s historically high mission capable rates and combat mission effectiveness. B-1s have been rotating into Southwest Asia since the 9/11 terrorist attacks, and since August 2005 they have been a continuous presence there. (379th AEW report by SrA. Spencer Gallien)