VANCE AFB, Okla. --- Officials with the 71st Flying Training Wing confirmed Sunday they are conducting a limited number of T-6 Texan II test flights as part of an ongoing investigation into possible issues with the aircraft's in-flight oxygen system.
Vance placed its more-than 100 T-6 aircraft on an "operational pause" Nov. 15 after five aircrew in four separate incidents reported symptoms similar to hypoxia, or oxygen deprivation, according to press releases provided to the News & Eagle.
Since then the base has been working with Air Education and Training Command, aircraft and component manufacturers and other Air Force Commands to investigate the cause of the incidents.
Vance public affairs chief Terri Schaefer told the News & Eagle Sunday the base was "launching a few sorties today with our senior pilots" as part of that investigation.
The investigation is ongoing, Schaefer said, and a decision has not yet been made on when the base will return to full T-6 flight operations.
Background to T-6 investigation
According to base officials, four instructor pilots and one student pilot assigned to Vance reported physiological incidents while flying this month.
Lt. Col. Eric Schmidt, Vance chief of safety, said the aircrew experienced "hypoxia-like symptoms in the airframe that caused the concern that what they felt was beyond the realm of normal operations."
Hypoxia is a condition in which the body is not receiving sufficient oxygen. (end of excerpt)
Click here for the full story, on the Enid News & Eagle website.