March 1, 2009 (by Lieven Dewitte) - On February 17, a Polish F-16 almost fell from the skies, from an altitude of 10,000 meters during a training exercises conducted in the Krzesiny district, near Poznan, western Poland.
PolAF F-16D block 52 #4082 from 6 elt seen taxiing at Poznan-Krzesiny AB on November 28th, 2007.
After plunging for about 6,500 feet, the pilot finally regained control of the aircraft and avoided disaster, reports Rzeczpospolita, one of Poland
's large nationwide daily newspapers.
The case is now under investigation by the Commission for Aircraft Accident Investigation.
In 2006, Poland bought 48 F-16 fighters from the US and became the 23rd country to start using the model. The machines were said to be one of the most technologically advanced in the world.
Their reliability, however, was put into question due to a series of problems, the last of which took place in July 2008 when the pilot had to conduct an emergency landing in Okęcie Airport, Warsaw.
In October 2007, two F-16 jet fighters stationed at Krzesiny airport
were forced to make an emergency landing.