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US fighter jet crashes in Germany

Published on October 08, 2019

An American F-16 fighter jet crashed and its pilot ejected to safety near the city of Trier in western Germany on Tuesday, the German air force told AFP.

The airman was “recovered with minor injuries” after crashing during a “routine training mission”, the US 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).

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

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.