Taiwanese F-16V Nosedives, Crashes Into Sea
Taiwanese F-16V Nosedives, Crashes Into Sea

TAIPEI, TAIWAN — Taiwan’s air force has suspended combat training for its F-16 fleet after the latest in a series of military aviation accidents.

A recently upgraded Taiwanese F-16V, the country’s most advanced fighter jet, crashed into the ocean off western Taiwan on Tuesday, January 11.

Air Force Command Headquarters said in a statement cited by Reuters that the F-16V took off from Chiayi Air Base at 2:55 p.m.

On a routine training mission.

The F-16V suddenly went missing from the radar screens at 3:23 p.m., about 30 minutes after take-off, SET News reports.

According to Taiwan’s National Rescue Command Center, debris from the missing jet was found on Wednesday.

But there were no signs of its pilot.

Taiwan’s Central News Agency reports local residents witnessed the jet plunge into the sea near Aogu Wetland in Chiayi’s Dongshi Township.

Another pilot and a ground controller confirmed that the plane nose-dived into the water after simulating missile launches.

Tuesday’s crash is the latest in a number of recent Taiwanese air force accidents.

In March one pilot died and another was missing after a mid-air collision of two F-5 jets.

In late 2020 an F-16 disappeared minutes after taking off from a base in Taiwan’s east coast and has still not been found.