[Updated] Belgian F-16BM Crashes In France. Both Pilots Safely Ejected. One Rescued After Hanging From High-Voltage Line.

Belgian Air Component F-16B Fighting Falcon Block 20 MLU at Leeuwarden Air Base, May 2006. (Image credit: Gerard van der Schaaf via Wiki)

A Belgian Air Force F-16BM has crashed in France. One Of The Pilots Hanging From High-Voltage Line After His Parachute Got Caught Before Being Rescued.

A Belgian Air Force two-seater F-16BM Fighting Falcon has crashed at around 10.30LT today in western France, Belgian media outlets reported. The pilots managed to eject from the aircraft and would be unscathed even though one of them would still be suspended from a high-voltage elextricity line after his parachute got caught.

The aircraft had departed from Florennes Air Base and was involved in a navigation exercise.

Belgian Defense spokesman Olivier Severin told the Belgian La Libre media outlet that a team from the Aviation Safety Directorate has already been dispatched to the crash site to investigate the incident.

A photo of the pilot handing from a high-voltage line was published by Le Telegramme. (Image credit: Le Telegramme).

French newspaper Le Telegramme reported that the F-16 hit the roof of a nearby house before crashing in an agricultural field, but no injuries are reported on the ground. One pilot has already been safely rescued. The second pilot is currently stuck with his parachute hanging from a high-voltage electricity line. The area has been evacuated while emergency services are working to rescue the suspended pilot and put out the fire originated by the crash.

According to Scramble magazine, out of the 24 F-16Bs originally procured by the Belgian Air Force (most of those were upgraded to the BM standard), only nine were still operational. With today loss, the remaining two-seaters are 8.The F-16BMs are based at Florennes and Kleine Brogel, assigned to 2 Wing and 10 Wing.

Update: Sept. 19, 2019 11.13GMT (13.13LT)

The second pilot was rescued. He would be safe now on his way to the hospital for checks.


About Stefano D'Urso
Stefano D'Urso is a freelance journalist and contributor to TheAviationist based in Lecce, Italy. A graduate in Industral Engineering he's also studying to achieve a Master Degree in Aerospace Engineering. Electronic Warfare, Loitering Munitions and OSINT techniques applied to the world of military operations and current conflicts are among his areas of expertise.