Air Force releases investigation results on F-16C crash


U.S. Air Forces in Europe and Air Forces Africa officials have released the results of the accident investigation into the Aug. 11, 2015, crash of a U.S. F-16C Fighting Falcon aircraft near the Grafenwoehr Training Area, Germany.

At the conclusion of the accident investigation, the board president, Col. Jill A. Long, 603rd Air Operations Center commander, found by a preponderance of evidence that the cause of the mishap was a structural failure that caused the main engine control to malfunction, which prohibited fuel flow to the engine. The lack of fuel flow prevented the engine restart and resulted in a complete loss of thrust, requiring the pilot to eject from the aircraft.

The pilot from the 52nd Fighter Wing’s 480th Fighter Squadron at Spangdahlem Air Base, Germany, ejected safely, sustaining only minor injuries. At the time of the incident, the pilot was a current and qualified F-16 pilot with 675 flight hours. There were no civilian injuries or casualties.

The board also found that, at the time of the mishap, a detailed review of active and historical aircraft maintenance records revealed no discrepancies to indicate engine, mechanical, flight control, or other problems existed with the aircraft.

The convening authority, USAFE-AFAFRICA Vice Commander Maj. Gen. Timothy Zadalis, approved the board president’s report without comments.

The executive summary of the report is available at