No ‘Aha’ in Sight Over F-15 Liability

The Air Force is still working through the aircraft structural factors that led to the extended grounding of the F-15 fleet, so it is not ready to say that Boeing (which acquired F-15 maker McDonnell Douglas) is liable, reports the Seattle Post-Intelligencer. In an interview, USAF acquisition official Lt. Gen. Donald Hoffman told the newspaper, “At this point, there’s no smoking gun that says, ‘Aha.’ ” Currently, the service has 161 F-15 A-D model aircraft that require continued examination for longeron problems; USAF cleared one of the 162 it originally put in the unsafe to fly—at least for the near future—category. The age of the aircraft makes assessing liability more difficult, Hoffman told the newspaper, noting, for instance, that after 25 years, documentation with details about specific aircraft acceptance is long gone.