There are confirmed news reports that an ultra stealthy B-2 bomber has crashed in Guam. The incident took place shortly after takeoff and both pilots apparently were able to eject safely. While there is not much data available about the B-2, other than the staggering $1.2 billion dollar price tag, this is the first reported crash.

While a single crash may not be indicative of a design problem, the entire fleet only consists of 21 planes. This albeit too small number means an almost 5% failure rate. This is a failure rate that would not be tolerated in civil aviation. The incident is being investigated, and you can bet your bottom dollar the Air Force will not be sharing the information with the general public.

While not wishing to make light of the situation, I cannot stop myself from wondering about the pilot. Can you imagine going home and when your wife asks you “So how was your day honey?” , you explain it was OK apart from wrecking a $1.2 billion airplane! Now that would be a show stopper.

I just hope that the investigation does not find the pilot in error and expect him to pay for the damages. He will likely need to take on a second job, maybe working at 7/11 on the night shift.

Simon Barrett

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