Seymour Johnson Squadron Grounded Due To Sequestration Cuts

A squadron of F-15E's at Seymour Johnson has been grounded because of sequestration cuts.

The base says the 336th Fighter Squadron will not conduct flight training so the Air Force can reduce training hours by some 45,000 hours between now and October 1st.

It leaves the 4th Fighter Wing with only one operational squadron of F-15's. "The stand-down will have a significant impact on the wing's overall operational readiness and ability to support contingencies around the world," said Col. Jeannie Leavitt, 4th Fighter Wing commander. "Combat skills and proficiency are perishable and take time to be regained. Fighter aviation is a highly demanding endeavor and there is no room for error."

Seymour Johnson says aircrews lose currency to fly combat missions after 60 days of not flying and it takes approximately 90 days of training to return the fighter squadron to combat mission ready status.

The 336th, also known as the World Famous Rocketeer, will be forced to shift their focus to ground training, use flight simulators and conducting academic training during the stand down. The air wing's commander says using the simulators cannot replace real world flying.