Passenger accidentally ejected from French Rafale B fighter jet

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Dassault will deliver first Rafale to India in September 2019

The 64-year-old passenger aboard the Rafale B, who is not a member of French Armed Forces, was thrown off the runway and suffered serious injuries, including back injuries.

On Mar. 20, 2019 an unusual accident took place while an Armée de l’Air (French Air Force) Rafale B fighter was taking off from Saint-Dizier air base.

The aircraft was taking off when the seat ejection device of the navigator tripped. The pilot managed to land the aircraft safely.

The 64-year-old passenger of the Rafale B, who is not a member of French Armed Forces, was thrown off the runway and suffered serious injuries, including back injuries. Hospitalized, he is in stable condition. The pilot suffered cuts in his hands because of the broken canopy.

The Rafale is a twin-jet fighter aircraft able to operate from both an aircraft carrier and a shore base. The fully versatile Rafale is able to carry out all combat aviation missions: air superiority and air defense, close air support, in-depth strikes, reconnaissance, anti-ship strikes and nuclear deterrence.

The Rafale entered service with the French Navy in 2004 and with the French Air Force in 2006. With more than 30,000 flight hours in operations, it has proven its worth in combat in Afghanistan, Libya, Mali, Iraq and Syria. The Rafale was ordered by Egypt, Qatar and India.

Photo credit: Chief Master Sgt. Gary Emery / U.S. Air Force

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