- The Washington Times - Tuesday, July 15, 2014

A fighter jet fleet that was grounded in early July after an engine on one of the planes caught fire on a runway will return to the skies on a limited basis.

On Monday, Pentagon inspection authorities for the Air Force and Navy approved the F-35 jet to return to flight, according to Defense Department spokesman Mark Wright.

“This is a limited flight clearance that includes an engine inspection regimen and a restricted flight envelope which will remain in effect until the root cause of the June 23 engine mishap is identified and corrected,” he said.

The day of the engine mishap, one of the Air Force jets caught fire while a pilot was preparing to take off from a runway at Eglin Air Force Base, which is located near Valparaiso, Fla.

Pentagon officials did not order a fleet-wide grounding until early July.

The stealthy F-35 is the Pentagon’s premier fighter jet. Lockheed Martin is the prime contractor for the jet.

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