Slovak Air Force MiG-29 Fighter Jets Allowed to Conduct Training Flights After September Crash

The Slovak Air Force’s MiG-29 fighter jet fleet that has been grounded as a result of the accident on Sept. 28 was allowed to conduct training flights from Oct. 31.

“Training flights will be permitted following the Preliminary Air Accident Investigation Report, the outcomes of which the MOD will not release until the Final Air Accident Investigation Report and the criminal legal investigation, led by an investigator of the Regional Directorate of the Police Corps Nitra, have been completed to ensure that the integrity of the investigation is not compromised”, said a Slovak Ministry of Defense statement.

On Sept. 28, a Slovak MiG-29 jet crashed at the village of Nové Sady in the Ceroviny neighborhood in the Nitra region at approx. 21:30hrs.

The pilot managed to eject before the crash and survived the incident. The incident occurred during a training flight involving two MiG-29s and the other aircraft touched down safely at Sliač Air Base.

Slovak Air Force’s aging fleet of MiG-29s will be replaced by the 14 F-16 Block 70 fighter aircraft currently being procured from the United States under the U.S. Foreign Military Sales (FMS) program. The contract for the procurement, worth around $800 million, was recently awarded to Lockheed Martin Aeronautics.

According to reports, the Slovak Air Force will take delivery of its first F-16 in the fourth quarter of 2022, with the last aircraft to be delivered by the end of 2023. Of the 14 aircraft, 12 jets will be one-seaters and 2 jets will be two-seat trainers.

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