F-16 Fighter Crashes Into California Warehouse, Pilot Ejects

RIVERSIDE, Calif. (AP) -
U.S. Air Force F-16 jet. (Reuters/Ints Kalnins – RC1B9A416670/File Photo)

A pilot ejected moments before an F-16 fighter jet crashed Thursday into a warehouse just outside March Air Reserve Base in California, military officials said.

The pilot was not hurt and there were no immediate reports of injuries on the ground, said Maj. Perry Covington, director of public affairs at the base.

Interstate 215, which runs between the base and the warehouse, was closed in both directions, backing up rush-hour traffic for miles.

Broadcast news showed a large hole in the roof and sprinklers on inside the building about 65 miles (105 kilometers) east of Los Angeles.

The jet’s cockpit canopy was on a runway and a parachute had settled in a nearby field.

The pilot, believed to be the only person on board the jet, was being medically evaluated, according to the Riverside County Sheriff’s Office.

The F-16 is assigned to the Air National Guard, officials said.

The base is home to the Air Force Reserve Command’s Fourth Air Force Headquarters and various units of the Army Reserve, Navy Reserve, Marine Corps Reserve, California Air National Guard and California Army National Guard.