Two Dutch Jet Fighters Collide Over Labrador, One Pilot Missing
GOOSE BAY, Newfoundland (AP) _ One pilot was killed and a second was injured Thursday when two Dutch single-seat F-16 jet fighters collided three miles over Labrador during NATO training maneuvers, the Canadian military said.
The injured pilot ejected from his plane.
Officials said the mid-afternoon collision occurred at 17,000 feet, about 45 miles north of Canadian Forces Base Goose Bay and eight miles west of Grand Lake.
Capt. Leo Vogt of 323 Squadron, based in the Netherlands, was found dead in the cockpit of his jet Thursday night, said Lt. Jeff Agnew, Goose Bay base spokesman.
The other pilot, 1st Lt. Rein Sneek of the same squadron, was bruised and scraped in ejecting from his jet and was airlifted to a hospital in Goose Bay, Agnew said.
Agnew said authorities have no idea at this time how the crash occurred. He said the military was hoping to get more information from Sneek, who was hospitalized overnight for observation.
The Dutch aircraft were taking part in a NATO air defense exercise.
Known as the Falcon, the American-built F-16 is a single-engine fighter used by the U.S. and Dutch air forces.
The Netherlands is among several NATO countries that send hundreds of pilots each year to CFB Goose Bay for training.
Innu, natives who live in the area, say the training flights, which take place each year from April to November, are disrupting their way of life and harming caribou herds. There have been numerous protests to try to stop the flights.
A board of inquiry will be convened by the Royal Netherlands Air Force to investigate the crash, Agnew said.