RAF Lakenheath personnel at the scene of plane crash are ‘OK’ says 48th Fighter Wing Commander
- Credit: AP
RAF Lakenheath has confirmed 48th Fighter Wing members suffered minor injuries and an aircraft is damaged after the Los Llanos crash that killed at least 10 people.
The incident at Los Llanos base involved a Greek F-16 fighter jet which collided with other planes after losing thrust during take-off yesterday.
Flames and a plume of black smoke could be seen rising into the air following the crash.
A post on the Facebook page of 48th Fighter Wing Commander Colonel Robert G. Novotny last night confirmed that USAF crews were 'OK'.
Three F-15E Strike Eagle aircraft from the 492nd Fighter Squadron and about 80 personnel are currently deployed at the Spanish base.
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Today, a spokesman confirmed that eight airmen were among the 13 given medical attention after the crash, suffering minor injuries including scrapes and burns, as well as smoke inhalation.
The spokesman added that 48th Fighter Wing aircraft were also caught up in the crash.
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'We can confirm that one aircraft is damaged and one is okay,' he said.
'The third aircraft is in such close proximity to the crash site that we haven't been able to assess damage yet.
'We share in the sorrow felt by out NATO allies during this crisis, and our thoughts are with those who lost loved ones and comrades as a result of this tragic accident.'
The 48th Fighter Wing is based at RAF Lakenheath and its plane bear the letters LN on their tails.
Tragedy struck in January 2014, when a 48th Fighter Wing helicopter crashed over north Norfolk killing four people.
Capt Christopher Stover, Capt Sean Ruane, Tech Sgt Dale Mathews and Staff Sgt Afton Ponce died on a training mission near Cley, on January 8.
Investigators later found clear evidence bird strikes caused the HH-60G Pave Hawk to crash.
Last night, some aircraft could be seen in pictures and video taken at the scene of the crash, which was hosting a Nato training exercise.
As well as the 10 people killed another 13 were injured.
Seven were in serious condition, one person was treated and released from hospital, while the condition of the other five were not disclosed.
Most of the victims were not believed to be Spaniards but Nato staff from member countries that participated in the program, according to a Defence Ministry official.
Nato Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said he was 'deeply saddened by the crash of a Greek fighter jet at the Los Llanos base in Spain, which has caused many casualties'.
He did not specify their nationalities in a statement, but called the crash 'a tragedy that affects the whole Nato family'.
The Spanish ministry said the jet that crashed was taking part in a Nato training exercise called the Tactical Leadership Program.
The 10 Nato countries that participate in TLP are Belgium, Britain, Denmark, France, Germany, Greece, Italy, the Netherlands, Spain and the United States.
Spain's Defence Ministry did not immediately disclose the nationalities of those participating at Los Llanos on Monday.
The Los Llanos base is near the southeastern Spanish city of Albacete, about a two and a half hour drive from Madrid.