Taiwan pilot dies in Mirage jet crash in France
Taiwan News, Staff Writer
2012-10-03 09:29 PM
TAIPEI (Taiwan News) – A Taiwanese pilot died when his Mirage 2000-5 jet crashed during a training mission over the east of France, reports said Wednesday.

The pilot was 37-year-old Wang Tung-yi, who was staying in France for a two-year training period, cable station TVBS reported. His plane had taken off from an air force base near Dijon in Burgundy, reports said.

French media reported that his fighter jet had crashed in a forested in sparsely inhabited region of Haute-Saone. The impact blew out the windows of a hangar and damaged an empty old house, but no further damage was reported to homes, reports said.

There was a danger though that 7,000 liters of kerosene from the plane would flow into a pond which formed part of the water supply for thousands of residents, local reports said.

An investigation had started into the causes and circumstances of the crash, according to the French media.

Taiwan took delivery of 60 Mirage jets in 1997-1998, at a time when tension with China was high.

In 2010, reports said that the French manufacturer had supplied extra parts and maintenance service to correct engine flaws. The engines reportedly showed cracks in their blades, causing the Air Force to cut the number of flights.

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