Air Force Says F-16 Crashes Are Up

October 24th, 2007  

Topic: Air Force Says F-16 Crashes Are Up

Air Force Says F-16 Crashes Are Up

By SCOTT LINDLAW 2 days ago
The dreaded BANG! came from deep within the F-16's lone engine, shaking the warplane as it made passes over an Arizona bombing range last December. Then came the alarming loss of thrust.
Two attempts to restart the engine failed. Having exhausted their options, the pilot and his student bailed out, parachuting to safety before the plane slammed into the Sonoran Desert, a $21 million loss for taxpayers.
Not all F-16 pilots have been so lucky recently. The accident rate for this workhorse fighter has risen over the past few years, and two pilots have died in the past year, according to an Associated Press review of Air Force documents.
In the fiscal year that ended Sept. 30, there were 10 "Class A" F-16 accidents crashes that resulted in death, loss of the aircraft or damage of more than $1 million. (An 11th F-16 crash was counted separately as a combat loss by the military because the pilot was strafing enemy trucks at the time.)

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