The Swedish Accident Investigation Board (SAIB) is studying the cause of a non-fatal accident involving an air force Saab JAS39C Gripen fighter on 19 April, with initial evidence suggesting that the pilot inadvertently ejected himself from the aircraft. The incident led to all C/D-model Gripens - including those operated by the Czech Republic and Hungary - being grounded until 24 April.

Detailed analysis of the Gripen's data recorders, which were recovered intact after the crash at Vidsel airbase, will take several weeks to complete, but the SAIB says: "So far there is no indication of any technical fault with the aircraft." Attention is focused on an accidental deployment of the ejection seat during a high g manoeuvre, it says.


The Gripen programme was boosted last week, with the signature of a memorandum of understanding between the Swedish and Norwegian governments and a letter of agreement between Saab-led Gripen International and Norwegian industry. Worth NKr150 million ($25 million) over the next two years, Oslo's investment will enable Norwegian firms to bid for development work linked to a potential acquisition of the Gripen as a replacement for Lockheed Martin F-16s. Norway has made similar investments in the Eurofighter Typhoon and Lockheed F-35 Joint Strike Fighter projects.

More information about the Gripens

Swedish air force


Source: Flight International