Video captures moment after pilot ejected from fiery F-16

Jessica Willey Image
Thursday, June 22, 2017
Video captures moment after pilot ejected from fiery F-16
Video captures moment after pilot ejected from fiery F-16.

HOUSTON, Texas (KTRK) -- Exclusive video shows the moments after a F-16 Fighting Falcon crashed at Ellington Airport Wednesday morning.

"Never seen anything like that before," Craig Moreau told Eyewitness News.

READ MORE: Pilot ejects from burning F-16 during takeoff at Ellington Field

Moreau just happened to be with a customer on a property adjacent to Ellington when they saw several explosions and the fighter jet skid to a stop. They were about 300 yards away from the end of the runway where the jet crashed on take-off. The pilot deployed his parachute and ejected. Moreau then started recording on his cell phone. He captured a new look at the potentially disastrous situation.

"I was a little scared," said Moreau. "He (the pilot) was blessed for sure."

His video shows the pilot walking away from the aircraft. There was thick black smoke in the air and emergency vehicles arriving. Strangely to Moreau at the time, they stopped short and didn't get any closer. Later he learned more than one live missile was on board the downed jet, and it was pointed right at them.

"Not everyday does a civilian have a sidewinder missile staring right at them...and live to tell the story," said Moreau, with a laugh.

No one will confirm what kind of munitions were on board, only that they are air-to-air missiles. The plane and pilot are part of the 138th Fighter Wing out of Tulsa, Oklahoma, on a training mission when the crash happened this morning. The pilot was taken to a hospital for evaluation. North American Aerospace Defense Command (NORAD) is investigating the crash.

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