F-16 fighter jet overruns Pingtung runway (update)

An F-16 fighter jet overran a runway while attempting to land at an airbase in southern Taiwan on Tuesday, according to the Air Force Command Headquarters.

The incident occurred at around 6:32 a.m. when an F-16, tail number 6829, plowed into the ground when landing at Pingtung Air Base.

Speaking in an online press conference, Air Force Chief of Staff Huang Chih-wei (???) said the pilot and the Weapon Systems Officer (WSO) in the twin-seat fighter jet were not injured in the incident.

The WSO, commonly nicknamed the "wizzo," is an air flight officer directly involved in all air operations and weapon systems of a military aircraft.

The plane has been towed into a hangar with only slight damage to its nose and landing gear, Huang said.

The two officers, both lieutenant colonels, did not issue any distress calls because there were no apparent malfunctions during the mission.

An investigation committee has been set up to look into the cause of the incident, and the plane's Flight Data Recorder will be analyzed, Huang said.

According to the Air Force, the fighter jet was taking part in a rehearsal for the upcoming Han Kuang military exercises, which will be held Sept. 13-17 and will include emergency takeoff and landing drills by fighter planes on public highways.

Huang said that despite the incident, the rehearsal will continue uninterrupted, and "the Huang Kuang exercises are expected to be held as scheduled."

Source: Focus Taiwan News Channel