August 12, 2010 (by Stars & Stripes) - An investigation has found that the crash of an F-16 fighter jet during landing at Osan Air Base in February was caused by a mechanical problem in the plane’s landing gear, the Air Force said Thursday morning.
The pilot escaped with minor injuries in the Feb. 25 crash, but the aircraft was destroyed, a financial loss to the Air Force of more than $23 million, said Master Sgt. Michael Hammond, a Pacific Air Forces spokesman.
The collapse of the right main landing gear when it touched down on the runway caused the aircraft to tilt to one side, and a Maverick
missile attached to the wing was scraping the runway’s paved surface. The aircraft veered to the right and off the runway.
It could not be learned immediately Thursday morning whether the missile was live or inert. The pilot, assigned to Osan's 36th Fighter Squadron and on a routine training flight, had ejected after efforts to control the jet in the landing failed, Hammond said.
A Pacific Air Forces news release said the investigation "ruled out pilot or other human error as causes of the mishap.".