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M-346 Jet Trainer Crashes Near Dubai

Nov. 18, 2011 - 03:45AM   |  
By DAVE MAJUMDAR   |   Comments
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An Alenia Aermacchi M-346 jet trainer crashed Nov. 18 near Dubai, a company spokesman said.

"A prototype M-346 aircraft owned by Alenia Aermacchi suffered an accident today while flying in United Arab Emirates air space on its return journey to Italy," wrote Alenia spokesman Jim Meltsner in an emailed statement. "The on-board crew successfully ejected from the aircraft, and no serious injuries were reported."

The UAE and company officials are investigating what happened, but there was no word yet on what caused the Italian-made twin-engine advanced jet trainer to crash.

"The causes of the accident are currently being investigated and, in accordance with company procedures, an internal investigation committee has also been set up," Meltsner wrote. "Alenia Aermacchi representatives are cooperating closely with the local authorities, through the Italian embassy in the United Arab Emirates."

A derivative of the M-346 called the T-100 is a potential candidate for the U.S. Air Force's nascent T-X program to replace the five-decade-old T-38 Talon advanced jet trainer.

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