HAMPTON, Va – The Air Force isn’t taking any chances with Hurricane Florence, ordering all F-22 Raptor and T-38 Talon aircraft at Langley Air Force Base in Hampton to evacuate to Rickenbacker Air National Guard Base in Ohio.
Colonel Jason Hinds, 1st Fighter Wing Commander, made the decision Monday.
“We have facilities here that can withstand hurricane-level winds, but there’s no reason to risk any damage to our F-22 fleet.” Hinds said in a release. “We and our associate partner, the Virginia Air National Guard 192nd Wing, will send about 100 personnel to Ohio to support the jet movement. We’ll begin flying jets out tomorrow and all wing aircraft are scheduled to arrive at Rickenbacker ANGB by Wednesday.”
“It’s been a couple years since we’ve had a really big weather event,” said Col. Sean Tyler, 633rd ABW commander, in the same release. “Our mission is to provide support for the operational units assigned to JBLE. That includes the fighter and intelligence wings at Langley, and multiple brigades at Ft Eustis. Our civil engineer and emergency management teams are ready and prepared to mitigate the effects of Hurricane Florence. They are already executing protective measures to secure our infrastructure from the worst of the storm. We’re also in constant communication with our state and municipal partners as part of the overall team safeguarding lives and property here on the peninsula.”
The 633rd Air Base Wing commander is leading the overall effort to ready Joint Base Langley-Eustis for Hurricane Florence.