June 26, 2003 (by Lieven Dewitte) - Yesterday, engine trouble forced a US pilot to land his F-16 Fighting Falcon in North Bay - Canada. Lt.-Col. Kurt Tek circled above the city for about 20 minutes before landing the jet at North Bay's airport.
Tek and four other pilots were en route to a base in Sicily (Italy
) to deliver five refurbished F-16s the Italian government purchased from the American government.
Apparently, the engine went into a backup control mode, which is an automatic feature if the primary fails, and when that happens the pilot is required to land the plane as soon as practical.
Three of the jets continued their flight, while one escorted Tek to the airport and also landed.
The flight had originated at Hill Air Force Base in Salt Lake City, Utah, and things started to go wrong as the F-16s were flying over North Bay.