A Taiwanese military fighter jet crash-landed in Hawaii on Monday as it was traveling back to Taiwan from an Air Force base in Arizona, according to reports.
The F-16 fighter jet’s front landing gear failed as the pilot was attempting to land at Daniel K. Inouye International Airport in Honolulu, Hawaii, at about 2:45 p.m. local time, according to a report. The pilot was able to use the jet’s tail hook, usually used for routine landings on aircraft carrier flight decks, to slow down the plane after the landing gear failed, the Hawaii Department of Transportation told a local media outlet. The runway where the incident took place is shared by the airport with Hickam Air Force Base. There were no reports of injuries after the fighter jet’s rough landing.
The F-16 belonged to Taiwan’s Republic of China Air Force and was returning to the island nation from Luke Air Force Base in Arizona, where the plane had received an “upgrade,” according to a Taiwanese media outlet. The nose of the aircraft was damaged in the incident, according to the report.
Taiwanese military aircraft “quietly use” Hawaii as an intermediate stop when flying to and from Luke Air Force Base, according to the Honolulu Star-Advertiser.
The Arizona base reportedly trains a rotation of Taiwanese pilots on F-16s and provides maintenance on the aircraft.
Luke Air Force Base has also been used to train pilots from other nations, including Turkish pilots to fly F-35 fighter jets.
The president of Taiwan said last month that the country’s military and the U.S. National Guard are “proactively planning cooperation.” The Pentagon did not reveal the specific operations, engagements, or training programs that the new effort would entail.
In May, Taiwan reported the largest incursion into its air defense identification zone by China’s air force since January.
President Joe Biden affirmed during a trip to Asia in May that the United States will get involved militarily to defend Taiwan if China invades, a comment that was later walked back by the White House.
A spokeswoman for Hawaii’s Department of Transportation told the Washington Examiner that the plane was not a Hawaii Air National Guard plane, but she would not confirm that it was an international aircraft. She added that the runway reopened at 9:58 p.m. local time.
The Air Force’s 15th Wing at Hickam Air Force Base would not confirm to the Washington Examiner that the F-16 was from Taiwan.
Luke Air Force Base did not respond to the Washington Examiner’s request for comment.


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