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Pentagon grounds F-35 jets at Luke Air Force Base, nationwide

PHOENIX — Following a directive from the Pentagon, Luke Air Force Base near Glendale, Ariz., has indefinitely suspended operations of its F-35 fighter jets.

Capt. Ryan DeCamp said Luke has stopped flying its two F-35 jets until the Arizona base hears back from Air Force leadership.

A statement from the Secretary of Air Force Public Affairs office at the Pentagon said Air Education and Training Command initiated a safety investigation into the F-35 after a pilot experienced a ground emergency Monday at Eglin Air Force Base in Florida.

“As a precautionary measure, the Air Force has decided to temporarily suspend all F-35A operations until it is determined that flights can resume safely,” the statement said.

DeCamp added that the directive does not apply to the F-16 jets, of which 121 are stationed at Luke. The base didn’t receive its first F-35 until March of this year.