USAF's F-16 Fighting Falcon crashes in Afghanistan


F-16

A US Air Force (USAF) operated F-16 Fighting Falcon multirole fighter aircraft has crashed near Bagram Airfield, Afghanistan.

The aircraft, assigned to the 455th Air Expeditionary Wing, crashed during takeoff on 29 March. US-led coalition forces are working to secure the crash site.

The pilot was able to successfully eject from the aircraft and is currently being evaluated by medical personnel at the Craig Joint Theater Hospital on Bagram Airfield.

A statement released by the USAF said that the enemy fire was not a factor in the crash.

The USAF will constitute an investigation team to uncover the cause of the crash.

In January this year, an F-16 aircraft, piloted by a Taiwanese trainee, crashed near Bagdad, Arizona, US. Media reports emerged that the pilot did not survive the accident.

In August 2015, an F-16 aircraft assigned to the 480th Fighter Squadron from Spangdahlem Air Base, Germany, crashed during a training flight at US Army Garrison Bavaria in Grafenwoehr.

"The pilot was able to successfully eject from the aircraft and is currently being evaluated by medical personnel at the Craig Joint Theater Hospital on Bagram Airfield."

However, the F-16 pilot was able to successfully eject from the aircraft, besides managing to jettison the fuel tanks over an unpopulated area.

Previously, an Iraqi Air Force's F-16 fighter jet crashed in Arizona near the US-Mexico border during a night training mission.

The accident involved an Iraqi student pilot, who was on a training programme with the Arizona Air National Guard's 162nd Wing.

Roughly 20 large aircraft operated by USAF were destroyed in accidents last year including six drones in Afghanistan, four in the Horn of Africa and three in Iraq, reported The Washington Post.


Image: A F-16 from the 169th Fighter Wing, South Carolina Air National Guard. Photo: SMSgt Thomas Meneguin