4 Super Hornets Damaged in Carrier Landing Gone Wrong

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An E-2D Hawkeye assigned to the "Bluetails" of Carrier Airborne Early Warning Squadron (VAW) 121 launches from the flight deck of the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN 72), Feb. 19, 2019. (U.S. Navy photo/Michael Singley)
An E-2D Hawkeye assigned to the "Bluetails" of Carrier Airborne Early Warning Squadron (VAW) 121 launches from the flight deck of the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN 72), Feb. 19, 2019. (U.S. Navy photo/Michael Singley)

While attempting to land on the aircraft carrier Abraham Lincoln in the Arabian Sea earlier this month, an E-2D Hawkeye propeller aircraft struck two F/A-18 Super Hornet aircraft and sent debris flying into two other F/A-18s on the flight deck, according to the Naval Safety Center.

The carrier-capable tactical airborne early warning aircraft was recovering [landing] at 7:40 p.m. Aug. 9 when it "impacted two other aircraft and caused debris impact damage to two additional aircraft," Navy Cmdr. Josh Frey, spokesman for the U.S. 5th Fleet, told Military.com on Tuesday via email.

"The landing aircraft was diverted and arrived safely at the divert location. No personnel were injured," he said. He could not provide the divert location for operational security reasons.

A report from the Naval Safety Center described the incident as a bolter, meaning the aircraft missed the arresting cable in a landing attempt.

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The incident was classified as a Class A mishap, according to the safety center. Class A mishaps involve fatalities, severe damage totaling $2 million or more, or a complete loss of the aircraft.

Frey said the affected aircraft are undergoing maintenance.

"There was minor damage to the aircraft involved, all of which is currently being repaired in order to return the aircraft to mission readiness," he said.

In 2016, during pre-deployment carrier landing qualification flights, an E-2C from Carrier Airborne Early Warning Squadron 123 nearly plunged into the sea after an arresting cable snapped and was unable to slow the incoming aircraft.

Eight sailors were injured and required medical evacuations from the carrier Dwight D. Eisenhower, Navy Times reported. A Navy investigation found that flaws in maintenance procedures contributed to the mishap, according to the paper.

-- Oriana Pawlyk can be reached at oriana.pawlyk@military.com. Follow her on Twitter at @Oriana0214.

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