Hawaiian F-15 Crash’s Cause Still Mystery

Air Force investigators were unable to determine the root cause of the crash of a Hawaiian Air National Guard F-15D Feb. 1 about 60 miles off the coast of Oahu, citing “no clear and convincing evidence,” Pacific Air Forces said in a May 7 release. However, the members of the accident investigation board did find “sufficient evidence to conclude” that both of the fighter’s rudders failed in a mid-range position to the left, caused most likely by a failure involving the aircraft’s aileron-rudder interconnect. “This failure induced a yawing, rolling motion to the left that the pilot was unable to correct,” according to the statement. The pilot ejected, suffering only minor injuries. But the aircraft was destroyed upon impact, a financial loss of $43. 8 million, PACAF said. The F-15D was assigned to the 199th Fighter Squadron at Hickam Air Force Base. The pilot was flying a basic fighter maneuvers training mission when the mishap occurred. PACAF gave no indication that this crash was related to the midair breakup of a Missouri ANG F-15C in November 2007 due to a faulty structural support near the cockpit. That accident led to the grounding of all F-15 A to D models for a while, including the aircraft of the 199th FS.