HILL AIR FORCE BASE, Utah (ABC4) – Hill Air Force Base said it will be extending its night-flying operations through March. Crews from the active duty 388th and Reserve 419th Fighter Wings have been conducting night-flying operations since the start of January.
The base will be conducting its night operations on most weekdays, but plans for them to be completed by about 10 p.m. each night. The exact days and times may vary, based on weather, airspace availability on the test, and training range among other factors.
The fighter wings will continue flying with the F-35A Lightning II. According to Hill Air Force Base, the F-35A is the nation’s most advanced fifth-generation fighter aircraft.
The night operations with the jet will help pilots stay combat-ready in all weather conditions. Night flying is limited to what is required for pilots to remain proficient in skills for deployments.
According to Hill Air Force Base, all of the wing’s fighter squadrons have deployed in support of combat operations in the Middle East, and remain ready in the event they are ever called upon. the 34th Fighter Squadron deployed to Spangdahlem Air Base in Germany early last year in support of NATO. The 421st Fighter Squadron deployed to Guam and throughout the Pacific to conduct combat exercises over the summer.
Hill Air Force Base said it is home to 78 F-35A Lightning IIs with the 388th and Reserve 419th Fighter Wings being the Air Force’s first combat-capable units.