Military: life support system didn't cause crash

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Associated Press

Posted on November 16, 2012 at 3:30 PM

Updated Friday, Nov 16 at 3:30 PM

TYNDALL AIR FORCE BASE, Fla. (AP) — The military says it doesn't appear an F-22 fighter's oxygen system caused the $190 million jet to crash.

Air Force Col. David Graff said in a prepared statement on Friday that an initial review of Thursday afternoon's crash found the life system did not play a role. But Graff said a full investigation is underway.

The pilot ejected safely before the stealth fighter jet went down in a wooded area of Tyndall Air Force Base in the Florida Panhandle.

In 2008, F-22 pilots began reporting hypoxia-like problems, forcing the Air Force to acknowledge concerns about the jet's oxygen supply system. Two years later, the oxygen system contributed to a fatal crash. Though pilot error ultimately was deemed to be the cause, the fleet was grounded for four months in 2011.

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