February 15, 2000 (by Lieven Dewitte) - An Air Force F-16 crashed Wednesday during a training mission over the Barry M. Goldwater bombing range in southwestern Arizona. The pilot ejected safely.
The F-16, out of Luke Air Force Base, was flying an air-to-air training mission as part of a four-jet formation. Before the start of an aerial engagement, the pilot, Maj. Anthony Barrell, said he had a problem and turned the jet toward the Gila Bend Air Force Auxiliary Field to recover. He ejected en route to Gila Bend.
The cause of the crash was under investigation.
It was the eighth crash since fall 1998 involving a jet flying a mission out of the base in Glendale, west of Phoenix. The $20 million jet was part of the 56th Fighter Wing at Luke, which is the world's largest F-16 training base.