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F-16 Crashes In New Mexico

The Air Force is set on an investigation after an F-16 Fighting Falcon jet crashed outside of Holloman Air Force Base, in New Mexico, on Tuesday April 30.

The Air Force officials said that the sole pilot, who was not yet identified, ejected from the Fighter jet and was taken by ambulance for medical treatment. The airman was later released from medical supervision after dealing with minor injuries, Holloman’s 49th Wing said on social media on Tuesday evening.

The service said that the aircraft, assigned to the 49th Wig, crashed around 11:50 am local time near White Sands National Park, which is about 7 miles outside of Holloman. The park is located near the Army’s White Sands Missile Range.

Further, The Air Force warned nonemergency personnel to steer clear of the area to avoid exposure to toxic chemicals on board the aircraft. Additional information about the crash, including the extent of fighter’s damage, has not yet been released by the officials.

Holloman is home to one of the Air Force’s F-16 training hubs and graduates about 180 Fighting Falcons pilots on average each year, as per the information available on its website. However, Tuesday’s jet incident marks the fourth F-16 accident within the past year, including three that occurred among the US owned fleet in South Korea.

Seventh Air Force briefly paused flying operations in late January after an F-16 assigned to the 8th Fighter Wing at Kunsan Air Base, South Korea, crashed off the country’s west coast. The pilot in that mishap ejected safely after experiencing an unspecified flight emergency, the Air Force said.

On an average, nearly about F-16 fighters have been totaled annually for the past decade, according to the latest available data compiled by the Air Force safety Center in 2021.

The multirole Fighter was first delivered to the Air Force in 1979 for use in air-to-air and air-to-ground combat. The service now owns about 841 of the fighters, a number it aims to reduce to 830 in fiscal year 2025.