The A-10 Warthog has been in some rough places over the years, but then again that’s what it was built for. It has faced retirement at the hands of Fifth-Generation Fighter jets but still managed to pull through. Not too long ago they Government announced that would be keeping the Warthog on through the 2020s, but now they have announced that they might be retired some of that.
This latest string of bad news for the A-10 claims that up to one-third of them could be retired. The problem they are encountering stems from their wings, which are nearing the end of their service life and the Air Force lacks replacement parts.
“We have some flexibility in the depot, we have some old wings that can be repaired or rejuvenated to go on. We can work through that, so there’s some flex in there.”
– General Mike Holmes (Air Force Air Combat Command Chief)
So what was looking up might have to come down simply because they can’t find parts to replace them. The A-10 has been in some tough scrapes and come out kicking, but this one is more troubling because it compromises the pilot’s safety.