Viggen’s Test Flight Ended Up In A Violent Crash, The Pilot Emerged From Flames Though
The Joint Forces Channel / YouTube
Test Pilots Are A Different Breed.
While testing a new platform, especially back in the day, you weren’t always sure what you were in for. Today, we have complex machines and computer systems that can simulate the behaviors of planes so the pilots have a good idea what will happen before they step foot in a new cockpit. Back in the day, it all looked good on paper and you just had to fly it to see if you were right.
Here, you’ll see one of the versions of Saab’s 37 Viggen platform being tested. It was a Swedish single-engined aircraft built for attack and reconnaissance missions and saw service from 1971 to 2005. One of its tests, however, didn’t go so well.
The Saab 37 Viggen’s major significance is being the first mass produced fighter with canards.
As you’ll see in this video, upon landing, the plane skid off the runway and dug its wheels into the soil. This turned it over striking the wing and sent it into a violent spin. As if that wasn’t enough, the fuel caught fire engulfing the plane with the pilot still inside.
We held our breaths for a few seconds, as you don’t see any movement for a while. Then, the canopy slowly opens, the test pilot escaping in the nick of time.
Those were some pretty intense few moments for sure.