Underinflated Tire Doomed F-16

An F-16 crashed during takeoff in July 2007 at Balad AB, Iraq, due to an underinflated nose gear tire and the pilot’s misinterpretation of the situation, Pacific Air Forces announced on Jan. 30, citing the findings of the accident investigation board. The F-16 was from the 35th Fighter Wing, Misawa AB, Japan, but deployed to the 13th Expeditionary Fighter Squadron at Balad. The pilot safely ejected and suffered no injuries, but the F-16 skidded off the runway, tumbled, and was completely destroyed at a loss of $24 million.