Whitehorse Daily Star

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Photo by Vince Fedoroff

EXPENSIVE EQUIPMENT TOUCHES DOWN – The two F-22 Raptors, one having landed after an engine malfunction, are seen Wednesday afternoon at Erik Nielsen Whitehorse International Airport. Each plane costs about $143 million US.

Engine malfunction forces U.S. fighter jet to land here

Whitehorse’s international airport saw some harmless excitement earlier this week.

By Ethan Lycan-Lang on December 15, 2022

Whitehorse’s international airport saw some harmless excitement earlier this week.

It involved two fighter jets, one malfunctioning engine and an unplanned Yukon pit stop for two American Air Force crew members now waiting to get home for the holidays.

At 3 p.m. Tuesday, the Erik Nielsen Whitehorse International Airport responded to an “unplanned emergency landing,” Carla Bohman, Yukon Highways and Public Works spokesperson, told the Star Wednesday.

That “unplanned” landing was made by two U.S. Air Force F-22 Raptors, flying to an Alaska air base, U.S. Air Force Maj. Clay Lancaster confirmed in an email Wednesday. 

On their way to Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson (JBER) in Anchorage, about 800 km west of Whitehorse, one of the F-22s had an “engine malfunction,” said Lancaster, who’s an official spokesperson for the base.

The malfunction prevented the plane from completing its journey.

At that point, a second aircraft was diverted from its course to “provide mutual support and assistance,” Lancaster said. 

“Erik Nielson Whitehorse International Airport was the safest, closest, and most suitable airport for the F-22’s unplanned landing location,” Lancaster said in the email.

“The crew is safe, and we are working on their return to JBER.”

Both aircraft, he said, were assigned to the 3rd Wing at JBER.

Though emergency vehicles arrived on the scene, Bohman said, airport operations were uninterrupted and the landing posed no risk to public safety. 

The U.S. website says a single F-22 Raptor costs about $143 million US.

The aircraft weighs in at 19,700 kg and measures 18.9 m in length, with a 13.6 m wingspan.

Comments (19)

Up 1 Down 0

F35? on Dec 21, 2022 at 7:42 pm


Every government has had its chance to purchase new jets….tanks, ships and red hoodies. Our present Minister of National Defence with her red coat in tow talks a lot about nothing. National Defence and Northern sovereignty have not been a priority since WWII.

Up 6 Down 1

A.Foulke on Dec 19, 2022 at 3:49 pm

CF-105 Mark 2 was meant to have the Orenda PS-13 Iroquois engine instead of the Pratt & Whitney J75. The user "bonanzajoe" then claimed that with this engine it would have "greatly surpassed" the Raptor when that's clearly not the case. Leaving aside the vast differences in stealth and avionics, the only thing that the Arrow would compete with the F-22 on is straightline speed and acceleration. North American had the similar XF-108 that was also canceled because straightline speed itself is no longer sufficient for a fighter.

Up 21 Down 1

John Redden on Dec 18, 2022 at 9:42 am

Glad to see pilots safe and sound hope they are sitting with families on the morning of the 25th.

As for the debate on the CF 105 it was way ahead of it's time. We will never know for sure where Avro would be today if it had continued. To even state why a 2022 technology was better than a 1959 is not an intelligent debate. It is like trying g to compare an hand calculator to today's computer.
Realistically without our previous technology we may not have today's technology
Merry Christmas and best of the season to all. No matter what you are celebrating.

Up 15 Down 2

Peter Foran on Dec 18, 2022 at 7:37 am

Let’s keep’ ‘em❗️

Up 5 Down 2

Randall Rosatte on Dec 17, 2022 at 7:47 pm

Why do you say the CF-105 had an Iroquois engine option available? It was the Orenda engine. The first jet engine with no through shaft.

Up 22 Down 14

Kevin on Dec 17, 2022 at 9:38 am

They canceled the F-22 program because it was too costly.
Instead they designed the F-35 as a replacement which has had nothing but issues. They also made the F-35 a single engine fighter to keep costs down. Imagine if this happened to an F-35....? They would be organizing a rescue mission. All fighters should be multi-engine. At least if one fails you can make it somewhere to land.

Up 25 Down 10

Nigel Spink on Dec 17, 2022 at 6:59 am

There was a time that the Canadian government insisted on its new jets having two engines against just such an eventuality. I am glad The pilots are safe and I bet they are glad they are not flying F35s.

Up 17 Down 8

Lee Day on Dec 17, 2022 at 2:30 am

“US ordered Diefenbaker to scrap it”!

Up 26 Down 4

A.Foulke on Dec 16, 2022 at 10:43 pm

bonanzajoe is completely wrong in stating that CF-105 Avro Arrow far surpasses the F-22 because it doesn’t. While the Avro Arrow was ahead of its time in many ways, even with the Iroquois engine, the thrust/weight is far inferior and the delta wings without any tail surfaces don’t help with maneuverability, not to mention that it’s completely unstealthy. The only thing the Avro Arrow can compete with the F-22 is speed and even then it doesn’t matter because F-22 only uses 36% afterburner (118% power out of 150% available) at Mach 2.

Up 46 Down 14

Ranger on Dec 16, 2022 at 9:21 pm

148 million for 1 bird and in Canada rangers are organizing bullet drives for any unused 308 ammo…..can’t wait for an election to get rid of the current government.

Up 16 Down 15

Ryder Larison on Dec 16, 2022 at 9:08 pm

Straight up don’t mess with me, the US has all the cool stuff! God bless the USA! That would have been so cool to see!

Up 17 Down 31

bonanzajoe on Dec 16, 2022 at 4:39 pm

@Josey Wales on Dec 15, 2022: The US doesn't ask Canada's permission to land their war machines, they order them to provide a landing place.

Up 41 Down 8

Gabe on Dec 16, 2022 at 3:14 pm

Wow! This is very cool. I wish I could’ve seen them!

Up 61 Down 30

Lockheed on Dec 16, 2022 at 9:15 am

Meanwhile in Canada we are using sticks and mud to hold military aircraft’s together. Thank god we are an ally of the US

Up 12 Down 9

john on Dec 15, 2022 at 9:57 pm

Testing Northern Defence System .1000 ft altitude

Up 43 Down 18

jack on Dec 15, 2022 at 9:53 pm

Usually, the first question asked in these situations is 'were they armed with any ordinance?' On F22 is carried internally. Did anyone ask?

Up 51 Down 14

simon on Dec 15, 2022 at 9:12 pm

Those 5th gen fighter are so sexy, I trade my wife anytime for one, I'll deal with the dishes.

Up 60 Down 35

bonanzajoe on Dec 15, 2022 at 7:33 pm

Did a quick comparison of today's Raptor and Canada's CF105 Avro Arrow which was scrapped 63 years ago. There wasn't that much difference. If the 105 Arrow had of had the Iroquois engine - also invented in Canada - it would have greatly surpassed today's Raptor. The US knew what Canada had - a fighter aircraft much beyond its time - and ordered PM Diefenbaker to scrap it for 3 of their obsolete US fighters and an obsolete ballistic missile. One can only imagine what the world would be flying today, if Canada had of continued with the 105 Arrow and Iroquois program. Several of Canada's Engineers and designers of the Arrow fighter, went to work with NASA and helped send the first American to the moon. Anybody hear of them getting any credit for that? Neither have I.

Up 36 Down 56

Josey Wales on Dec 15, 2022 at 4:15 pm

Well what a coincidence, everything here is malfunctioning too!
Best place to be is in the land of mal/disfuction with a war weapon proper.
Our government hates guns, violence, alpha persons, war planes that scare the shyte outta those that wish harm to the nation that owns it.
Surprised they let them land, given the clear disdain our SS and PM Blackface have for scary weapons of war.

Silly me, forgot they don’t hate guns! They just hate us having them.
Our money used to take ours away...and our money to buy guns for un vetted Ukrainians and other mercenaries.

Yup...all related to these 22s landing.
“I use traditional 22 gauge rifle for moose and caribou hunting” said yet another ignorant liberal talking head in our effin house yesterday.

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