IAF F-16
IAF F-16 Israel news photo: Flash 90

Two IAF pilots were forced to abandon their F-16 jet on Wednesday, while attempting to land it at the Ramat David airbase in northern Israel.

An initial investigation revealed that the pilots were forced to abandon the plane due to technical malfunctions that could have caused it to crash, said IAF Chief Maj.-Gen. Amir Eshel.

The pilots were evacuated for medical examinations, although they did not appear to be harmed.

The incident took place around 2pm, as the jet was attempting to land at the end of a routine training flight.

As the jet was approaching its landing destination, the pilot and navigator detected a potentially life-threatening malfunction in their gear. They then abandoned the aircraft as it was travelling at a speed of 300 km/h.

The jet eventually veered off the runway and came to a stop.

Maj.-Gen. Eshel said the Air Force is conducting an investigation of the incident.  

The IAF has grounded all fighter-jets from the same model, as the precise malfunction is still unknown.