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F-16 Fighter Jet Crash: Video Surfaces Online, Shows Extent of Damage

On May 17, 2019, an F-16 fighter jet being flown in routine training exercises crashed into a warehouse just outside March Air Reserve Base in Southern California and before the impact, the pilot ejected. However, five people on the ground were reported injured. Now, videos of the crash have surfaced online showing the F-16 fighter jet going head-first into the commercial building – the crash which left a hole in the roof. As reported in the video, there was a small fire after the crash but the sprinklers were able to put it out just in time.

That’s not it, a video uploaded by Jeff Schoffstall on his YouTube channel shows a first person view of when Jeff – who was inside the warehouse at the time of impact – discovered the crash.

Earlier it was stated by officials that there were no reported injuries. The fighter jet was assigned to the 114th Fighter Wing, Sioux Falls, South Dakota and was conducting a training mission for the North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD), officials said. The Los Angeles Times, citing a base fire official, reported that the crash ignited a small fire, and a photo of the accident scene posted on local television station KCAL-TV showed a gaping hole in the roof of a large grey building.

The warplane went down at about 3:30 p.m. Pacific Time and slammed into a warehouse at the end of the base runway, base spokesman Major Perry Covington told Reuters by telephone.

"The pilot did eject and the pilot is OK," he said, adding he did not believe anyone was inside the warehouse when the crash occurred.

The sprawling installation, located in Riverside County, California, about 65 miles (105 km) east of Los Angeles, is home to the Air Force Reserve 452nd Air Mobility Wing. There are normally between 2,000 and 6,000 Air Force reservists and other personnel on base at any given time, Covington said.

A section of Interstate 215, a major north-south route running through the base, was closed in both directions after the crash, according to the California Highway Patrol. NORAD operations are designed to protect the air space of both the U.S. and Canada and draws forces from both countries.

Officials said that the cause of the crash is under investigation.

(With inputs from Reuters)