Cause of F-16 crash released

LANGLEY AIR FORCE BASE, VA. (ACCNS) - A combination of factors resulted in the collision of two F-16CMs Oct. 15, 2009, according to an Air Combat Command accident investigation board report released Jan. 11.

The collision occurred 126 nautical miles southeast of Shaw Air Force Base during a night close-air support training mission. The wingman died upon collision.

The accident investigation board president found the mishap was caused by the wingman's failure to reduce airspeed and establish the appropriate flight path vector when performing a night rejoin.

The wingman experienced a radar failure during the rejoin, which diverted his attention from recognizing and correcting the airspeed and flight path errors.

The flight lead was uninjured and the lead aircraft suffered moderate damage to the flight control surfaces and external stores. The No. 2 aircraft was completely destroyed.

Total damage to both of the aircraft was valued at $26.9 million. Both aircraft were assigned to the 77th Fighter Squadron, 20th Fighter Wing, Shaw AFB.

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