£500million fleet of RAF jets left grounded for more than a week — due to a computer update

A £500 MILLION fleet of RAF jets was left grounded for more than a week – thanks to a technical glitch.

The Hawk T2 planes were unable to fly for more than a week after an IT update caused problems with the flight computer.

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The 28-strong fleet of Hawk T2 planes at RAF Valley in Anglesey, North Wales, have been grounded after a computer update[/caption]

The problem left the 28-strong fleet at RAF Valley in Anglesey, North Wales – where Prince William served as an air rescue helicopter pilot – unable to take off.

The single engine trainer aircraft are used to train pilots and cost £18 million each when they were introduced in 2003.

A source told The Sun: “After a computer update on all of the Hawk T2 planes, the whole fleet has been grounded as the update has screwed up the whole flight computer.

“On the base, questions are being asked as to why the software was not tested on one plane before being rolled out.”


‘Questions are being asked as to why the software was not tested before being rolled out’, a source said[/caption]

The Hawk T2 planes are made by BAE Systems and used to provide Advanced Fast Jet Training for RAF and Royal Navy pilots.

The jets arrived at RAF Valley in 2011 and have a digital glass cockpit designed to closely resemble those of fast jets.

An MOD spokesman said: “Our Hawk T2s at RAF Valley are up and flying after we undertook some planned software upgrades to ensure our trainee pilots are benefitting the very latest technology.

“This should have no impact on when pilots go on to graduate.”

It is understood trainee pilots spent time in the classroom and using the flight simulator during the problems last month and have not suffered any delay to their 11-month training regime.

A BAE Systems spokesman said: “During a planned upgrade, the Hawk T2 used at RAF Valley for fighter pilot training did not fly. The scheduled upgrade is now complete and Hawk T2 flying has recommenced.”


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