The tragedy of the aerobatic plane that mourns Italy: the pilot ejected, but a girl died

A five year old girl He died on Saturday when a fighter jet crashed into the car in which he and his family were traveling. Tricolor Freccethe acrobatic patrol of the Italian Air Forcewho was participating in an exhibition near the city of Turin (northern Italy).

The accident occurred when a training plane, a MB-339fell to the ground during the takeoff phase.

“The patrol had barely taken off (…) when, for reasons currently unknown, the aircraft piloted by Major Oscar Del Do “It lost altitude and crashed into the ground,” said a statement from the Ministry of Defense.

Just before impact the pilot managed to ejectindicated the same source, explaining that at the moment it is not possible to confirm the causes of the accident, although one of the hypotheses is an impact with a bird.

“The fire that occurred after the device hit the ground unfortunately it hit a passing car (…) with four people on boardcausing the death of a girl and injuries to the other three passengers in the vehicle,” the ministry indicated.

Firefighters seal the area where a car was hit by a plane from the Italian aerobatic team Frecce Tricolori during a practice flight in Turin. (Matteo Secci/LaPresse via AP) (Matteo Secci/)

The girl had come with her parents to see a training session for the Italian Air Force’s aerobatic patrol planes.

The girl’s mother and older brother, aged twelve, remain hospitalized for Burnswhile the father was discharged on Sunday, according to hospital sources.

Father’s pain

“Where did I go wrong? What else could she have done? What? ”He said, heartbroken, the girl’s father Paolo Origliasso. “I tried to unlatch the seat, but I couldn’t do it. “I tried until the end.”

The tragedy occurred after the takeoff of the acrobatic patrol of the Turin’s Caselle airport to go together with other planes to participate in an air show over the centenary of the Italian air force.

Accident Italy - Frecce Tricolori
An unidentified man cries at the scene of the accident. (Matteo Secci/LaPresse via AP) (Matteo Secci/)

The video of the accident shows nine aircraft in two tight V formations, before one of them falls below the others and crashes, sending a fireball into the air. The pilot is seen ejecting with a parachute shortly before impact inside a fenced airfield. suffered Burns.

“I am deeply saddened by what happened, I only think about little Laura“said the pilot in statements reported by Italian media.

The plane crashed near the town of San Francesco al Campoabout 20 km northwest of Turinand hit the car in which the family was traveling.

Photos of the aftermath show the wreckage of the plane in a cornfieldand a burned and destroyed car overturned on the shoulder of a road.

The car burned after the impact with the plane (REUTERS/Massimo Pinca)
The car burned after the impact with the plane (REUTERS/Massimo Pinca) (MASSIMO PINCA/)

Research into the causes

The Air Force said it was investigating the reason for the accidentbut indicated that one hypothesis was that the aircraft had suffered the bird strike during takeoff. The city prosecutor’s office Ivrea I was also investigating.

According to an audio that circulated through military chats and was broadcast this Monday by Italian media, the risk due to the presence of birds was “serious”, that is, sharp. On the scale of risks associated with the presence of birds on landing strips, there are three bands: low (slight), “moderate” (moderate) and “severe” (acute).

The Ivrea prosecutor’s office is working on all the communications that took place before the accident and has also taken into account this audio, whose protagonist is trying to identify.

The escuadron Tricolor FrecceItaly’s leading aerobatic pilot team, was preparing for an air show scheduled for Sunday as part of events commemorating the centenary of the Italian Air Force.

The Frecce Tricolori during an event before a MotoGP race (REUTERS/Jennifer Lorenzini)
The Frecce Tricolori during an event before a MotoGP race (REUTERS/Jennifer Lorenzini) (JENNIFER LORENZINI/)

They usually perform spectacular flyovers at events of national importance, leaving trails of red, green and white smoke, the colors of the Italian flag. They also perform more complex stunts at air shows.

In 1988, three aircraft from the Tricolor Frecce collided and crashed to the ground during an air show at the Air Base Ramstein (Germany) attended by about 300,000 people. The three pilots and 67 people on the ground died.. Hundreds more suffered injuries.