Fighter jets collide over Italy, start forest fire

Fighter jets collide over Italy, start forest fire

19 August 2014

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Italy — Two Italian Air Force fighter jets collided in midair Tuesday, igniting a massive fire after the planes crashed into a forest, officials said.

The planes, each a Panavia Tornado, collided during a training exercise over Italy’s eastern Marche region, on the Adriatic Sea. The pilots ejected from their planes, but eyewitnesses offered no sightings of parachutes, only reporting one plane burst into flames in midair immediately after the collision.

The Tornado has been in use since the early 1990s, and is manufactured by a consortium of Italian, British and German aerospace companies.

Firefighters battled several fires Tuesday in the forests overlooking the town of Ascoli Piceno. The nearby town of Casa Murana is also threatened by the fires.

No casualties, from the accident or from the fires, have been reported.

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