The U.S. military has grounded its entire fleet of F-35s in the wake of one of the planes crashing in SC two weeks ago.
Joe DellaVedova, a spokesman for the F-35 program, said: "The action to perform the inspection is driven from initial data from the ongoing investigation of the F-35B that crashed in the vicinity of Beaufort, South Carolina".
The pilot in that incident ejected safely but the aircraft was destroyed.
"At this time, the cause of the mishap has not yet been determined", said Capt. Christopher Harrison, a U.S. Marine Corps spokesman. In response, all U.S. military F-35s will be inspected as well as F-35s operated by United States allies.
The grounding order affects all variants of the advanced fighter jets, including the Air Force's F-35A and the Navy's F-35C.
Certain fuel tubes were identified as a potential problem. If good tubes are already installed, then those planes would be returned to operational status.
Inspections should be completed within the next 24 to 48 hours.
The United States temporarily suspended operations for its fleet of F-35 fighter jets for 24 to 48 hours to check for possible faulty fuel tubes in the engines of the planes, after a crash in SC late last month raised concerns about whether the part was to blame.
"We will take every measure to ensure safe operations while we deliver, sustain and modernize the F-35 for the warfighter and our defense partners", DellaVedova said.
The decision involves a potentially bad fuel tube and affects more than 250 US -owned jets, as well as almost 100 that belong to other nations including Britain.
Foreign operators of the F-35, such as Britain or Israel, are also grounding their fighter jets for inspection, according to the JPO statement.
All three services have stopped flying the F-35 while fuel tubes in the aircraft are inspected and replaced if necessary.
It wasn't immediately clear how many aircraft were affected.
During Wednesday's hearing, Sen.
"I know it's a complex aircraft, only took nearly two decades to procure and develop which, that's a whole other topic for a whole other hearing", said Sullivan, who is chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee subpanel on readiness and management support. "But it does seem to me kind of ludicrous that we get new aircraft off the production line and within a month they are at 65 percent readiness".
Now the USA military has purchased 245 aircraft from Lockheed Martin.
Sullivan asked whether the F-35 could hit an 80 percent readiness mark within a year. The US government's accountability office estimates all costs associated with the project will amount to one trillion dollars.