PASADENA (CNS) - Spectators at the upcoming Rose Parade won't be getting a glimpse of the B-2 stealth bomber this year.
A flyover by the impressive bomber has opened the floral procession along Colorado Boulevard in Pasadena in recent years. But officials at Whiteman Air Force Base in Missouri said they have temporarily grounded their B-2 bomber fleet to perform safety inspections. The move came following a Dec. 10 emergency landing at the base that left one of the bombers damaged on the runway.
But that doesn't mean there won't be a military flyover to start the Rose Parade. Instead of the B-2, the flyover will be done by B-1B bombers from Ellsworth Air Force Base in South Dakota.
``Our number one concern is the safety and security of our personnel and fleet,'' Col. Daniel Diehl, 509th Bomb Wing commander at Whiteman Air Force Base, said in a statement. ``We deeply regret having to make this decision so close to the event, but we are committed to returning to Pasadena in 2024.
Although we are not participating in this flyover, we remain steadfast in our commitment to answer our nation's call.'' Whiteman officials said the B-1 bombers have `` rich history and will represent Striker nation well, carrying on the bomber tradition at the Tournament of Roses.''