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An Oregon Air Guard F-15 reportedly took a million-dollar munitions dump before an emergency landing
An Oregon Air National Guard F-15C Eagle that made an emergency landing on Wednesday ditched its entire arsenal of live air-to-air missiles before touching down at Portland International Airport, The War Zone reports.
- The aircraft, assigned to the 142nd Fighter Wing out of Portland Air National Guard Base, was conducting an alert training mission on the morning Feb. 21 when it experienced a malfunction "centered around its landing gear," according to CBS News affiliate KOIN.
- The War Zone, citing sources, reports that F-15 diverted into a nearby military operating area and fired off its missile load into the Pacific Ocean before making its arrested landing at Portland International Airport.
- That the F-15 fired its missile rather than simply dropping them is itself a rare occurrence, per the War Zone, but ditching the missiles was an expensive choice: the F-15's standard alert loudout of four AIM-120C AMRAAMs and a pair of AIM-9X Sidewinders likely cost the Pentagon $4.5 million — at least.
- The F-15 pilot was not injured in the incident, KOIN reports, and the Oregon Air National Guard has launched an investigation into the cause of the landing gear issue.
- Read the whole report at The War Zone here.
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March Air Reserve Base in California will host nearly 200 U.S. citizens who were flown out of Wuhan, China due to the rapidly-spreading coronavirus, a Defense Department spokeswoman announced on Wednesday.
"March Air Reserve Base and the Department of Defense (DoD) stand ready to provide housing support to Health and Human Services (HHS) as they work to handle the arrival of nearly 200 people, including Department of State employees, dependents and U.S. citizens evacuated from Wuhan, China," said Pentagon press secretary Alyssa Farah in a statement on Wednesday.
Wuhan is the epicenter of the coronavirus, which is a mild to severe respiratory illness that's associated with symptoms of fever, cough and shortness of breath, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
The virus has so far killed 132 people and infected nearly 6,000 others in China, according to news reports.
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