Pentagon claims 'no issues' after F-35 float explodes at Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade

NEW YORK — The military's fleet of ceremonial F-35 floats has been temporarily grounded after one of the vehicles exploded during the Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade, destroying nearly an entire city block along 6th Avenue.

According to witnesses, after a collision with the Thomas the Tank Engine blimp, the float burst into flames and crashed into a crowd of spectators, killing thousands. While the damage is estimated to be in the billions of dollars, Pentagon and Lockheed Martin officials claim there is nothing wrong with the floats themselves, and that the fleet remains parade ready.

"An incident or two of extraordinary carnage is expected in the early phases of any ceremonial decorations program," said Pentagon spokeswoman Dana White. "The F-35 float remains the most technologically advanced holiday decoration on earth, and will continue to provide the American people with the pomp and pageantry they deserve."

Critics of the program have noted that F-35 floats have repeatedly suffered from helium intake problems, leading pilots to black out during various holiday processions.

"I totally blacked out during last year's St. Patty's Day parade," said pilot Seamus O'Toole. "Definitely an intake problem."

Others have hinted at possible collusion between Thomas the Tank Engine and the Russians. However, despite these setbacks, the Pentagon plans to have the program operational again in time for the Christmas pageant season.

"So maybe we have to make a few upgrades so it can defend against anthropomorphic inflatable trains. No big deal," said White. "It's nothing we haven't done before."