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German Military Halts Eurofighter Deliveries Over Flaw

Oct. 13, 2015
The problem was similar to a defect identified last year and also related to the deburring of holes drilled into the fuselage.

BERLIN—Germany's defense ministry has identified a new technical problem with Eurofighter combat aircraft and has frozen deliveries until further notice, a spokesman said Tuesday.

The problem was similar to a defect identified last year and also related to the deburring of holes drilled into the fuselage, but at "another location," he said.

The manufacturer has stressed that the flaw does not affect the aircraft's safety, ease of use or lifespan, national news agency DPA reported.

The Eurofighter consortium could not immediately be reached for comment.

Germany's Bundeswehr had previously halted but then resumed deliveries of the jet over a similar problem. It now has 110 Eurofighters, with 33 more to be delivered.

The new problem would not force a further reduction in flying hours, which were already reduced last year from 3,000 to 1,500 hours per plane, the ministry spokesman said.

The Eurofighter Typhoon is Europe's largest collaborative defense programme—a partnership between Italy's Finmeccanica, Britain's BAE Systems and European aerospace group Airbus.

It competes with Boeing's Super Hornet F18 and France's Dassault Rafale.

Since the Eurofighter entered into service in 2003, a total of 599 have been sold and 444 delivered to six nations—Germany, Britain, Italy, Spain, Austria and Saudi Arabia.

Britain's Defense Ministry was aware of the issue but said its Typhoon aircraft were "flying as normal and deliveries are continuing."

Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2015

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