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Iraqi student pilot killed in F-16D crashed in Arizona

September 5, 2017 (by Jon Sommerville) - An Iraqi student F-16 pilot was killed when an F-16 jet crashed during a training mission in southeastern Arizona, authorities said Wednesday.

IqAF F-16C block 52 #1605 is parked under a sun shade at Tucson IAP. [Photo by Xuxinyi1000]

The aircraft belonging to the Arizona Air National Guard’s 162nd Wing was lost around 15:00h about 80 miles (129 kilometers) northwest of Tucson. Local Sheriff has confirmed the pilot died.

The pilot was Iraqi student pilot, Captain Noor Falih Hizam Rasn, and the only person on board the aircraft at the time. A crater was left in the desert floor and the canopy was close by. This is the second Iraqi pilot killed while training in the F-16.

In July 2015, an Iraqi brigadier general flying from the 162nd died when his F-16, a newer model recently delivered to the Iraqi air force, crashed during night training near Douglas.

The 162nd Wing is the Air Guard’s biggest F-16 training operation and conducts training missions across southern and central Arizona military ranges. Since 1990 it has trained pilots from Iraq, Singapore, Poland, Norway, Denmark, Oman, Belgium and the Netherlands.

US Air Force quickly assembled an interim safety board to investigate the incident.

In Memoriam
Additional images:

USAF F-16D block 25 #83-1180 from the 195th FS is taxiing by the camera at Tuscon IAP on February 21st, 2008. [ photo by Bruce Leibowitz]

USAF F-16D block 25 #83-1175 from the 195th FS seen taxiing at Tucson IAP on August 16th, 2012. [Photo by Kevin Bell]

USAF F-16D block 42 #88-0173 assigned to the 152nd FS on its home ramp at Tucson IAP in February of 1996. Note the aircraft is in the two tone paint scheme in this shot. [Photo by Kevin Patrick]