F-16 military fighter jet crashes into building in Riverside County – Los Angeles Times

F-16 military fighter jet crashes into building in Riverside County - Los Angeles Times
F-16 fighter jet crashes while trying to land at California base, no injuries reported
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A F-16 jet has crashed into a warehouse building near March Reserve Air Force Base in Riverside. (U.S. Air Force photo by Master Sgt. Andy Dunaway)

The aircraft originally took off from March Air Reserve Base for a training exercise and crashed at the end of a runway. The pilot, who was the only person board, ejected safely on base and deployed a parachute, according to KABC. The pilot is a member of the 144th Fighter Wing based in Fresno, California, reportedly had little to no injuries.

An F-16 fighter jet crashed into a warehouse while attempting to land at March Air Reserve Base in Southern California, an Air Force official confirmed to Fox News late Thursday.

“It was almost to the point where I had to cover my ears, and next thing you know I just hear this explosion,” Daniel Gallegos, a witness at the scene, said to KABC. “I turn around to the back of the building and I just seen a burst of flames and just the ceiling start falling through every part of the building.”

The pilot was not hurt and there were no immediate reports of injuries on the ground, said Maj. Perry Covington, director of public affairs at the base.

🚨Plane crash🚨 into building, pilot ejected and being medically evaluated. Please stay away from area and clear from emergency vehicles until directed otherwise. Updates to follow.

Interstate 215, which runs between the base and the warehouse, was closed in both directions, backing up rush-hour traffic for miles.

The pilot belongs to the 144th Fighter Wing of the California Air National Guard and the aircraft belongs to the South Dakota Air National Guard in Sioux Falls, South Dakota.

Military fighter jet crashes at base near Los Angeles, no injuries

Television news footage showed a large hole in the roof and sprinklers on inside the building about 65 miles east of Los Angeles. The jet's cockpit canopy was on a runway and a parachute had settled in a nearby field.

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Fighter jet crashed into California Air Reserve base warehouse

The pilot ejected and was being medically evaluated, according to the Riverside County Sheriff's Office.

The F-16 pancaked onto the roof of the 500,000-sq-ft building, causing a fire that triggered the on-site sprinkler system, containing the flames, reports said. 

The F-16 is assigned to the Air National Guard, officials said. One official told Fox News that the F-16 was one of the alert jets for the North American Aerospace Defense Command and was armed.

The pilot was not hurt and there were no immediate reports of injuries on the ground, said Maj. Perry Covington, director of public affairs at the base. 

The base is home to the Air Force Reserve Command's Fourth Air Force Headquarters and various units of the Army Reserve, Navy Reserve, Marine Corps Reserve, California Air National Guard and California Army National Guard.


Posted in Riverside