Bombers Arrive at RAF Fairford to Train and Exercise Capabilities

04 June 2014

U.S. Embassy, London

Press Release
U.S. Air Forces in Europe and Air Forces Africa
HQ USAFE-AFAFRICA Public Affairs, Box 120, Unit 3050, APO AE 09012
Telephone: +49 (0) 6371 47 6558; DSN 314 480-6558

RAMSTEIN AIR BASE, Germany — Two U.S. B-52 Stratofortresses from Barksdale Air Force Base, La., and one Minot Air Force Base, N.D., B-52 currently operating from Ellsworth Air Force Base, S.D., arrived at Royal Air Force Fairford, England, today, where Airmen will train and integrate with U.S. and allied military forces in the region.

During this deployment, which will span approximately 2 weeks, the multi-role heavy bombers will conduct training flights in the USEUCOM area of operations, providing opportunities for aircrews to sharpen skills in several key operational sets and become familiar with airbases and operations in the region. In recognition of the legacy of the U.S. Eighth Air Force in the Allied invasion of Normandy in World War II, a B-52 will also take part in the 70th anniversary D-Day commemoration in Graignes, France, June 7.

RAF Fairford is maintained by the U.S. Air Force and RAF personnel in support of contingency operations. Its strategic location, robust support facilities, and approximately 10,000 ft. runway establish the airbase as a unique and versatile capability and an ideal training area for large-scale training. RAF Fairford has served the contingency requirements of the U.S. and RAF and their NATO partners since it first opened in 1944, and has played a key role in the most significant operations in recent military history, including Operations Desert Storm, Allied Force and Iraqi Freedom.

The Department of Defense routinely conducts training missions in support of geographic combatant commands to ensure the U.S. has a credible and flexible capability to respond to a variety of potential threats. Bomber operations enhance this capability by providing the President a variety of options he may need to protect the nation or its allies and partners.

The B-52 is a long-range, multi-role bomber capable of delivering both conventional and nuclear munitions. B-52s can fly at high subsonic speeds at altitudes up to 50,000 feet. Deployed aircraft will not bring live weapons into the United Kingdom.