US F-16 jet crashes over western Germany

COMPILED FROM WIRE SERVICES
ISTANBUL
Published 08.10.2019 17:26
Updated 09.10.2019 00:46

An F-16 warplane crashed over uninhabited territory near the western German city of Trier, public broadcaster SWR reported on Tuesday, adding that the pilot had been able to eject to safety.

The crashed jet belonged to the U.S. Air Force, a spokesman for the the German Air Force told Reuters.

The airman was "recovered with minor injuries" after crashing during a "routine training mission", the U.S. Air Force base at nearby Spangdahlem confirmed in a statement.

Local police said they rushed to the scene of the crash near the village of Zemmer after receiving multiple emergency calls around 3:15 pm local time (1315 GMT).

The mayor of the local municipality of Zemmer said the aircraft had crashed in a wooded area.

Authorities blocked off a large zone around the crash site including several roads, the police statement added, urging drivers to avoid the area.

SWR said that according to police large quantities of jet fuel had been spilt over the crash site.

Germany is no stranger to military aircraft crashes, including in its own shortage-plagued Bundeswehr armed forces.

In June this year, two of the air force's Eurofighter jets crashed after colliding in mid-air in northeastern Germany.

One of the pilots was killed, while the other ejected to safety.

Less than a week later, a helicopter pilot died when his aircraft crashed near an army training centre.

The last American military crash in Germany was in 2015, when one of the Spangdahlem base's F-16 fighters went down in northern Bavaria.

In that incident, the pilot survived after ejecting from the plane.

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