U.S. Air Force F16 fighter aircraft will be on the ground at the 188th Fighter Wing in Fort Smith for the next two months.
The base is hosting seven F16C Falcons and 40 maintenance, operation and support personnel from the Oklahoma Air National Guard’s Tulsa-based 138th Fighter Wing. The F16s and the airmen who fly and maintain them will be at the 188th through the middle of June, according to a news release from Colonel Mark Anderson.
The decision to temporarily relocate the fighter aircraft comes after runway and taxi construction at the Tulsa base caused problems for their flying operations.
While in Fort Smith, the 138th will conduct daily flight training operations and maintenance. Pilots will also be utilizing the 188th’s Razorback Range located at Fort Chaffee.
Airmen from the 138th and 188th will be working together, sharing ramp and taxiway facilities while the base.
The 188th’s is currently in the middle of converting from its A10 fighter aircraft to its new drone mission. There are four of the A10s left at the base for now. The final A10 is scheduled to leave the base in June.