One Pilot Dead as 2 IAF Surya Kiran Hawks Crash During Rehearsals For Aero India Expo in Bengaluru

Bengaluru: One Indian Air Force pilot died on Tuesday after two Surya Kiran Hawks collided mid-air during rehearsals for the Aero India 2019 defence exhibition in Bengaluru.

The pilot, of the aerobatics team of the air force, was practicing spin manoeuvres when the accident happened, eye witnesses said. Two other pilots managed to eject from the planes safely.

A video showed thick, black plumes of smoke coming from near the Yelahanka airbase. One civilian was also injured in the accident.

The Surya Kiran aerobatic team has been an eye catcher at multiple aero India shows and had recently upgraded to the Hawk from Kiran aircraft.

The team had flown in complete formation, comprising nine jets, on Monday and all parameters of the flights were normal. The team again took off in complete formation for rehearsals on Tuesday when two of the aircrafts collided while practicing a certain manoeuvre.

The accident happened in the airspace near Nitte Meenakshi Engineering College. Police officials said the debris has fallen near ISRO layout, Yelahanka new town area.

The 12th edition of Aero India 2019, an international aerospace and defence exhibition, will be held from 20-24 February at Yelahanka in Bengaluru.

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