F-16 Fighting Falcon News

USAF F-16CG crashes over Yugoslavia

May 1, 1999 (by Lieven Dewitte) - NATO lost its second warplane in combat in five weeks of raids on Yugoslavia on Sunday but once again the pilot was picked up just hours later in a dramatic night-time rescue.

USAF F-16C block 40 #88-0550 with Aviano markings. It crashed on May 1st, 1999 during operation Allied Force. [Photo by Alec Fushi]

NATO military spokesman Colonel Konrad Freytag said the U.S. F-16CG (#88-0550) suffered engine failure as it returned from a mission over Yugoslavia and the cause was being investigated. Serbian media said the aircraft had been shot down.

The F-16 came down in Serbia 18 km (11 miles) east of the town of Kozluk on the border with Bosnia. The pilot ejected at around 2:20 a. m. (0020 GMT) and he was rescued by NATO forces two hours later.

Additional images:

USAF F-16C block 40 #88-0550 which was lost on May 2nd, 1999 but seen here in happier times on August 2nd, 1995 landing at Aviano AB. The aircraft was with the 555th FS when this photo was taken and when it was lost during combat over Kosovo. [Photo by Sergio Gava]