The Pentagon inspector general is investigating the Air Force’s official probe into a fatal F-22 crash that concluded the pilot was to blame. “The assessment will focus on the adherence of the AIB [Accident Investigation Board] to the procedures set forth in Air Force Instruction (AFI) 51-503, ‘Aerospace Accident Investigations,’” Randolph Stone, the deputy IG for policy and oversight, said in a Jan. 25 letter to Air Force Secretary Michael Donley. The IG also will “verify that AIB conclusions are supported by evidence of record consistent with standards of proof established by AFI 51-503.”
Battleland can’t recall a similar case when the IG scrutinized a crash report. But controversy has surrounded the November 2010 crash that killed Captain Jeffrey Haney after his F-22 plunged to the ground in Alaska.
By clear and convincing evidence, I find the cause of the mishap was the MP’s [mishap pilot's] failure to recognize and initiate a timely dive recovery due to channelized attention, breakdown of visual scan and unrecognized spatial disorientation.
…the investigating officer concluded. But the F-22 has been plagued by oxygen problems that may have triggered the sequence of events leading to the crash. A number of Air Force pilots, including Battleland’s own Karl Johnson, have questioned the official Air Force conclusion that Haney was to blame for his own death.