Losses and Aviation Safety

Spangdahlem F-16 Crashes, Pilots Ejects Safely

The F-16 crashed at about 3 p.m. near Zemmer, western Germany, during a routine training sortie.

On Oct. 8, 2019 a U.S. Air Force (USAF) F-16 Fighting Falcon crashed at about 3 p.m. near Zemmer, western Germany, during a routine training sortie.

According to the service news release, the pilot ejected safely and has been recovered with minor injuries. The aircraft was assigned to the 480th Fighter Squadron, 52nd Fighter Wing, Spangdahlem Air Base, Germany.   

First responders are responding to the incident at this time.

Angela Watson, a spokeswoman for the base, said she had no immediate details about the cause of the crash.

A board of officers will investigate the accident.  Additional details will be provided as they become available.

The 52nd Fighter Wing, Spangdahlem Air Base, Germany, maintains, deploys, and employs F-16 Fighting Falcon fighter aircraft and $6 billion of United States Protection Level 1 assets in support of NATO and national defense directives. The wing is comprised of approximately 5,000 military and civilian personnel and is organized into five groups responsible for operations, maintenance, mission support, medical operations and munitions maintenance. The wing provides support to the 726th Air Mobility Squadron as it sustains AMC’s air mobility operations throughout Europe, Africa and Southwest Asia. The wing supports the Supreme Allied Commander, Europe with 5,000 mission-ready military and civilian personnel in 16 squadrons providing support to 7 geographically separated units, 13 real property sites and eight tenant units in five nations across Europe promoting regional stability. 

As Europe’s only Suppression of Enemy Air Defense (SEAD) fighter squadron, the 480th FS is assigned 28 F-16 Fighting Falcons to provide expeditionary combat capability in SEAD, as well as close air support, air interdiction and counter air. Finally, the wing continues to support the U.S. Air Force’s Theater Security Package deployments to Europe. Since 2015, TSP units, comprised of eight rotations of active duty and ANG F-15 and A-10 aircraft and associated personnel, reassured and enhanced NATO security and stability in 11 countries throughout Europe.

U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Joshua R. M. Dewberry

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.

Recent Posts

Dragon Lady retirement moves forward: USAF retires U-2 Tail 80-1085 as her pilot conducts their 1,085 solo flight

Beale retires U-2 Tail 80-1085 as her pilot conducts their 1,085 solo flight On Apr.… Read More

9 hours ago

USAF Avionics Technician explains why Scaled Composites ARES was like a mini A-10 Warthog

The Scaled Composites ARES Agile Responsive Effective Support (ARES) is a full-scale proof-of-concept demonstrator that… Read More

1 day ago

An Omega KDC-10 is the first commercial tanker to refuel USAF B-52, MC-130J over Pacific Ocean

Omega KDC-10 commercial tanker refuels USAF B-52, MC-130J over Pacific Ocean As Pacific Air Forces… Read More

1 day ago

The night Chinese scrambled 12 MiGs to intercept a lone CIA B-17 Spy Plane. They failed, and two of them crashed.

The MiG-17 The Soviet MiG-17 (NATO code-name "Fresco") was designed to replace the famous MiG-15… Read More

2 days ago