As China flexes its muscle up in the Himalayas and in the South China Sea, Chinese state-run media published a report of a PLAAF fighter jet crashing down without sharing the exact location of the crash.
On Oct. 5, the People’s Liberation Army Daily reported that pilot Wang Jiandong communicated encountering a bird strike shortly after takeoff. The engine’s in-flight shutdown warning instantly began flashing, and the display screen went black, TaiwanNews quoted the Chines media.
After five seconds, emergency backup power kicked in and the cockpit display screen was restored. Wang then tried to push the throttle forward to increase thrust, but there was no response, as the engine had come to a complete stop.
As he was only 272.7 meters above the ground, Wang recognised there was no time to return to the base and that his aircraft is crashing. According to the Chinese media report, Wang directed the plane away from populated areas “three times” within 37 seconds and aimed it at a rice paddy fields before ejecting a mere 75.9 meters above the ground and safely landing in a nearby orchard.
After an investigation by the PLA, it was authenticated that the crash was caused by a bird-hit on the engine of the jet during takeoff, causing it to stall; however, the report did not specify the time and location of the incident. The report did confirm that the pilot is a member of the PLA’s Southern Theater Command.
It is not revealed what type of a jet was involved in the incident, however, the only hint that the report shared was the stock image used in the article included a Chengdu J-10 taxiing on a runway.