Indonesian fighter jet catches fire on runway, pilot jumps to safety

An Indonesian fighter jet caught fire just before take-off on Thursday (April 16) at Halim Air Base in Jakarta, local officials said.

Fortunately, the pilot managed to jump to safety as flames and thick smoke engulfed the F-16 aircraft.

He suffered minor injuries and is being treated in hospital.

Air force chief of staff Agus Supriatna said on news channel MetroTV: "As the aircraft was about to take off, there was a fire in the engine, and the pilot straight away decided to abort the flight."

"The pilot was rushed to hospital but he is conscious," he added.

Military spokesman Fuad Basya said the airman suffered a minor injury as he jumped from the cockpit.

He said an investigation into the incident has been launched.

The fighter jet had been due to take off alongside three other aircraft. The other planes took off without incident.

All four were making preparations to provide security at a summit of Asian and African leaders in Indonesia next week.

Source: AFP