F-16 Crash Blamed on Pilot Error

F-16 Missing Wing

Last October’s midair collision between two Oklahoma Air National Guard F-16s was blamed on pilot error:

The pilots…were flying in formation, conducting tricky combat maneuvers, with a third F-16 role playing as an attacking enemy. The two pilots lost sight of each other before their right wings collided 16 seconds later in clear skies.

The instructor lost control and ejected; the student returned to base with “one and a half wings” (thus the picture above.)

The text describes what is known as “Air Combat Maneuvers,” or ACM, in which a “blue” two-ship practices being bounced by a single “red” enemy.

Visual deconfliction and role responsibility are generally strong emphasis items in the brief and throughout the flight, for precisely the reason these pilots discovered.

Also at CNN.