Check Out These Images of Military Aircraft Seeking Refuge from the Fury of Hurricane Matthew

If you live in Columbus, Ohio, you might be wondering why a flock of F-22 Raptors suddenly appeared at Rickenbacker Air National Guard Base out of the blue. Don’t worry, it has nothing to do with any super secret government operation to implement martial law, aka Jade Helm 2016: The Sequel, but rather, everything to do with an advance evacuation of a number of military air bases on the Eastern seaboard of the United States before the worst of Hurricane Matthew hit over the weekend. This evacuation included C-17 Globemaster IIIs, A-10 Thunderbolt IIs, F-15 Eagles, F-22 Raptors and F-35 Lightning IIs from installations which couldn’t provide adequate shelter for these multi-million dollar jets from the wrath of the super-storm, which has managed to wreak considerable havoc across the east coast in just two days.

While many military vehicles are certainly built rugged, exposing them to 140 mile an hour winds is far less than a good idea, especially when you take into account how much it costs to fix up the damage sustained by any one of these costly pieces of machinery. So the better alternative, than leaving planes parked on the ramp, or in open-air shelters, is to fly them over to an airport or base where they can ride out the storm in complete safety before returning back to their home bases after damage assessments are concluded and debris cleared from taxiways, ramps and runways. The US Air Force did exactly that. Check out the pictures below!

F-22 Raptors from Langley AFB (Virginia) at Rickenbacker ANGB (Ohio)

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F-15 Eagles from Jacksonville ANG (Florida) at Eglin AFB (Florida)

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C-17 Globemaster IIIs from JB Charleston (South Carolina) at Fort Campbell (Kentucky)

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A-10 Thunderbolt IIs from Moody AFB (Georgia) at Tyndall AFB (Florida)

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F-15E Strike Eagles from Seymour Johnson AFB (North Carolina) at Barksdale AFB (Louisana)

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A number of the aircraft evacuated to other bases, including the C-17s from South Carolina, will still be fully operational and mission-capable, and will likely fly out of their temporary bases until they can be returned to Charleston.

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