Air Force Grounds B-2 Bomber Fleet


The U.S. Air Force has grounded its fleet of B-2 Spirit nuclear bombers following an incident that resulted in a B-2 making an emergency landing on Dec. 10. The aircraft was damaged on the runway at Missouri’s Whiteman Air Force Base and caught fire after landing. No injuries were reported and the accident investigation is ongoing.

As previously reported by AVweb, the emergency landing stemmed from an undisclosed in-flight malfunction that occurred during routine operations. The Air Force is planning to inspect the entire B-2 fleet, 20 aircraft in total, before returning the model to service. It is not yet known how long the inspections will take.

The incident is the second B-2 landing accident to occur at Whiteman in the last two years. In September 2021, a B-2 was damaged in a runway excursion while making an emergency landing at the base. That accident, which resulted in around $10 million in damage to the aircraft, was attributed to a gear collapse caused by worn-out springs in the left main gear failing to keep it locked.

Kate O'Connor
Kate O’Connor works as AVweb's Editor-in-Chief. She is a private pilot, certificated aircraft dispatcher, and graduate of Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University.

Other AVwebflash Articles


    • The B-52 is an early, but straight-forward design. The B-2 is a complex FBW and computer-driven exotic technology.

  1. Hard to believe… these planes are ready old and need replacing. So much was learned from this fleet to make the B21 even better.

    • Rumongering says they’re using every trick to invade America’s academia, military research and manufacturing systems, including Tik Tok. Russia and other ‘bit’ players have their hands full with ‘a target rich environment’ – the USA. Hardening computer systems is an ongoing challenge.

  2. The Whiteman AFB runway has reopened; that means the jet is in a hangar somewhere:

  3. Russia defeated superior German equipment with Numbers of lower-tech equipment. We have forgotten our history. (5 F-5s will defeat an F35)

  4. The Russians have an interesting approach to military equipment, In quantity there is a quality,and Perfection is the enemy of “good enough”