Thunderbirds Crash Report And Video

JEP

Malko In Charge
Staff member
I did a search and could not find this so I apoligize in advance if it has been posted. The ejection is quite a force.

Cockpit Video

By Mary Grady
Newswriter, Editor

Pilot error caused a U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds F-16 to crash at an air show on Sept. 14 at Mountain Home Air Force Base, Idaho, the Air Force said on Wednesday. (See below for in-cockpit video of the crash.) The pilot incorrectly climbed to 1,670 feet AGL instead of 2,500 feet before initiating the pull-down to the Split-S maneuver, according to the Air Force news release. The pilot, Chris Stricklin, 31, apparently flew by mistake to the MSL altitude used when practicing the maneuver at his home base, Nellis AFB in Nevada, which is 1,000 feet lower than the Idaho field elevation. The pilot ejected just eight-tenths of a second before impact, after reportedly making an effort to steer the aircraft away from the crowd of about 85,000 ... and now works at the Pentagon, in Washington, D.C. Stricklin suffered minor injuries. The F-16, valued at $20.4 million, was destroyed.

When Stricklin realized something was wrong, he exerted maximum back stick pressure and rolled slightly left to ensure the aircraft would impact away from the crowd should he have to eject, the Air Force said. He ejected when the aircraft was 140 feet above the ground. There was no other damage to military or civilian property. Also, the board determined other factors substantially contributed to creating the opportunity for the error to occur, including the requirement for demonstration pilots to convert AGL elevations to MSL altitudes, and performing a maneuver with a limited margin of error. Instead of just zeroing the altimeter to deck level as a result of the crash, procedures have been changed to require that Thunderbird pilots climb an extra 1,000 feet before starting the Split-S maneuver. Pilots must also call out their altitude to the ground safety operator in MSL rather than AGL numbers.
 

Falcon

New Member
That is crazy....just as soon as he pulled, the video was over ....quick thinking saved his life, if i didnt know any better i would think he has experience in this manuever. (ejecting.
)

-Seth
 

mtsu_av8er

Well-Known Member
[ QUOTE ]
if i didnt know any better i would think he has experience in this manuever. (ejecting.
)

-Seth

[/ QUOTE ]

I would imagine that jet drivers get extensive training in ejecting....MikeD, care to elaborate?

What about Tomcatter??
 

SteveC

Really?
Staff member
[ QUOTE ]
What about Tomcatter??


[/ QUOTE ]
Didn't he do an ejection live, right on this website?
 

MikeD

Administrator
Staff member
[ QUOTE ]
[ QUOTE ]
if i didnt know any better i would think he has experience in this manuever. (ejecting.
)

-Seth

[/ QUOTE ]

I would imagine that jet drivers get extensive training in ejecting....MikeD, care to elaborate?

What about Tomcatter??


[/ QUOTE ]

Ejection seat/egress refresher training is a 6 month currency. This includes retraining on ejection procedures, post-ejection procedures prior to/after landing, as well as emergency ground egress training.

Problems with a sick jet? You can plant it in a clear area? Then get the hell out of it. Easier to replace a jet than a fully trained/qualified pilot. Too many guys try to stick with their jet for no good reason.

The A-7D Corsair that crashed in Indianapolis, Indiana in 1987 is a prime example.
 
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