Dutch F-16 mistakenly strafes range control tower. And it’s not the first time.

On Nov. 4, a Dutch F-16 strafed a control tower on Vlieland Island Vliehors shooting range by mistake. It was not the first time such incident occurred.

The plane was to attack a target located within the shooting range with its M61 Vulcan cannon but, in an unfortunate incident, the rounds hit a control tower, located 500 meters further. Fortunately the controllers in the tower were unharmed. The tower itself though did receive some damage.

The reason for the incident is unknown and a special commision will gather to investigate.

This is the second time that a friendly fire incident happened in Vliehors.

Back in 2001, a German Tornado did shoot at the control tower in very similar circumstances. Back in 1998, a Danish F-16 even sent a guided missile into the tower. Fortunately just one person was mildly injured.

No information on the RNlAF F-16 involved is available. The Dutch Vipers are stationed in Volkel and Leeuwarden bases. Since the latter one is undergoing some works, the local F-16s were relocated to the southern airbase.

Jacek Siminski for TheAviationist

Image Credit: Jerzy Siminski

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About Jacek Siminski
Standing contributor for TheAviationist. Aviation photojournalist. Co-Founder of DefensePhoto.com. Expert in linguistics, Cold War discourse, Cold War history and policy and media communications.