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PAF exec: OV-10 bomber planes to fly again

November 21, 2011 12:17pm
The Philippine Air Force has lifted the grounding of its OV-10 Bronco fleet, nearly two weeks after one of its kind crashed near the Edwin Andrews Air base in Zamboanga City due to engine trouble, a military spokesman said Monday.

In a text message to reporters, Air Force spokesman Lt. Col. Miguel Ernesto Okol said that based on the recommendations of Brig. Gen. Rene Samonte, commander of the 15th Strike based in Cavite City, the special inspection revealed that the remaining bomber planes passed all airworthiness parameters and are safe to operate again.

"Air Force chief Lt. Gen. Oscar Rabena approved the lifting and putting back the OV-10s to operational status," Okol said.

For security reasons, the Air Force does not disclose the number of operational OV-10 planes,, which are used to provide air support to ground troops in combat operations.

On Nov. 9, two pilots were hurt after an OV-10 Bronco plane crashed near the runway of the Edwin Andrews Air Base in Zamboanga City due to engine trouble.

At the time, Lt. Col. Randolph Cabangbang, spokesman of the Armed Forces' Western Mindanao Command, said the two pilots of the bomber plane ejected to safety.

Okol said investigation on the incident is ongoing, but quickly added that "the remaining fleet may be flown already since their airworthiness have been certified." — RSJ/KBK, GMA News