Thursday, April 12, 2018

Pentagon stops accepting Lockheed F-35 jets over repair cost dispute

via Reuters
The U.S. Department of Defense has stopped accepting most deliveries of F-35 jets from Lockheed Martin Corp (LMT.N) because of a dispute over who will cover costs for fixing a production error, three people familiar with the matter said.

Lockheed confirmed on Wednesday that the Pentagon had halted deliveries of the jet over a contractual issue, but did not give further details.

Last year, the Pentagon stopped accepting F-35s for 30 days after discovering corrosion where panels were fastened to the airframe, an issue that affected more than 200 of the stealthy jets. Once a fix had been devised, the deliveries resumed, and Lockheed hit its target aircraft delivery numbers for 2017.

But deliveries were paused again over a dispute as to who will pay for what will likely be a complex logistical fix that could require technicians to travel widely to mend aircraft based around the world, said the people, who spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak publicly about the matter.

When the Pentagon stops taking delivery of F-35s, foreign customers can also be affected. So far at least two foreign governments have stopped accepting F-35s as a result of this issue, two of the sources said.
Story here.

This is so batshit insane!

The Pentagon has placed themselves into a terrible box because they bought airplanes that weren't ready and now Lockheed Martin is refusing to cooperate because it would wreck its bottom line.

But if they don't cooperate then that means that the Pentagon can't afford to buy more planes which means that LM's bottom line is wrecked anyway!

Chickens are coming home to roost in this program.

About fucking time.

Failure is inevitable when you see this much fraud, waste and abuse.  It's just a matter of who can pocket enough money to retire on before the bean counters get wise...and before the prosecutors can get spooled up.

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