(Corrects to make clear order is maintained, not lifted)
WASHINGTON, July 11 The U.S. Navy on Friday
maintained a grounding order for F-35 B-model and C-model
fighter jets built by Lockheed Martin Corp given that it
remained unclear what had caused a massive engine failure on an
Air Force F-35 jet on June 23.
"At this time, I do not have sufficient information to
return the F-35B and F-35C fleet to flight," Vice Admiral David
Dunaway, who heads the Navy's Air Systems Command, said in an
updated directive obtained by Reuters. "There is no discernible
event that represents a root cause."
Until the grounding is lifted, the U.S. Marine Corps and
Britain will not be able to ferry four F-35B aircraft to Britain
for the fighter jet's planned international debut at two air
shows in Britain this month.
Dunaway said the Navy and other services continued to
investigate the incident, and planned to update the flight
directive no later than July 16 - two days after the start of
the high-profile Farnborough air show outside London.
(Editing by Sandra Maler)