Safe in the Fowler’s Net

A T-38C jet trainer snagged the crash barrier at Vance AFB, Okla., aborting takeoff at high speed due to apparent mechanical malfunction, said base officials. The 25th Flying Training Squadron instructor and student declared an emergency on April 26 while departing runway 17 Center on a training sortie. Safety personnel quickly deployed the mesh net, preventing the aircraft from overrunning the runway threshold. Both instructor and student walked away unscathed, and damage to the airframe and barrier was minor, 2nd Lt. Thomas Barger, spokesman for Vance’s 71st Flying Training Wing, told the Daily Report. “All indications were that all the safety measures that the pilots learn and everything worked out the way it was supposed to,” he said. Air Education and Training Command has launched an investigation, but preliminary indications are that “it wasn’t a bird strike,” said Barger. It appears “there was an issue with the nose gear,” he added. (Vance release)