Losses and Aviation Safety

Heart-stopping video shows the moment Air Force Thunderbird has to take evasive action to avoid midair incident during Los Angeles flyover

Dramatic footage features one of the US Air Force Thunderbirds taking evasive action to avoid midair incident during Los Angeles flyover.

A dramatic footage taken on May 15 from a news helicopter and available on Dailymail website, features one of the US Air Force (USAF) Thunderbirds taking evasive action to avoid midair incident during Los Angeles flyover to support frontline workers.


As the formation banked left, Thunderbird #6 Opposing Solo pilot Capt. Kyle Oliver on the far right of the delta formation suddenly broke away. 

In fact according to Aerobatic Teams, as the formation was making a left turn, Thunderbird #1 Lt. Col. John Caldwell made a slight correction turn that led Thunderbird 3 to make a further adjustment too and Thunderbird 6 to completely pull away from the formation to avoid a potential collision. 

The rest of the six-ship delta formation also loses its shape. After few more seconds, Thunderbirds return to its tight delta shape. In addition, after few more seconds they start a left turn.

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Probably Thunderbird #1 started the left turn too earlier and then he corrected the straight flying, but too quickly and probably without notice the entire formation.

Noteworthy the US Navy Blue Angels experienced an incident too while performing a flyby over Detroit.

Many metro Detroiters saw it and took pictures and videos. 

But according to Fox2 Detroit one video circulating the internet right now shows a specific view that’s too close for comfort. 

The following video is from a drone and looks incredible, But, unfortunately, it’s also incredibly dangerous and likely illegal.

During high-profile events like this, there are things called TFRs, or temporary flight restrictions, for drone pilots. That means you cannot fly there. 

The FAA says the incident was reported to them and that they are investigating. 

Photo credit: Bloomberg QuickTake/YouTube via Dailymail

Dario Leone

Dario Leone is an aviation, defense and military writer. He is the Founder and Editor of “The Aviation Geek Club” one of the world’s most read military aviation blogs. His writing has appeared in The National Interest and other news media. He has reported from Europe and flown Super Puma and Cougar helicopters with the Swiss Air Force.

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