The Israel Defense Forces announced, Friday, that Air Force Commander Amir Eshel has given the military's fleet of Bell AH-1 Cobra helicopters permission to return to the skies in the next few days. They were grounded following the March 12 crash that killed reservists Noam Ron and Erez Flexer.
The interim findings of the investigation into the incident indicate that the crash was caused by a break in a rear rotor blade and not by pilot error or the age of the helicopter. The investigation is continuing with the cooperation of the Bell company. The return of the Cobras is being accompanied by examinations of all the choppers and a change in the Air Force's maintenance program.