Air Force Returns Grounded F-22s To Service

By: AP
By: AP
The Air Force

US Air Force F-22 Raptor jet refuels in flight from KC-135R Stratotanker jet (AP)

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JOINT BASE ELMENDORF-RICHARDSON, Alaska (AP) -- The nation's F-22 fighter jets are back in the air, four months after they were grounded over pilot complaints about a lack of oxygen.

Air Force officials began flying the stealth planes again Wednesday following a stand-down order imposed over hypoxia issues reported by at least 12 pilots in the last three years.

The Air Force has studied the plane for months, and officials announced this week that the analysis of data collected prompted them to return the planes to the air. More detailed information about what led to the decision was not immediately available.

The planes and pilots will be subjected to additional inspections and testing.

The Air Force has 170 Raptors, 40 of them based at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson in Anchorage.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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