F-16 encounter with PC-12 and Beech Premier


F-16 encounter with PC-12 and Beech Premier


Check out Plane Madness Podcast to hear a 20min interview with the PC-12 pilot.




Perplexed!? :open_mouth:
There’s gotta be alot more to this. He said he didn’t bust any airspace, TFR, or restricted area.
I may have missed it, but it probably was not known by the civillian side of this story, was the 16 armed with cameras or real warheads?


While you are correct that he did not “bust” any airspace, it says that he was operating in a Military Operations Area. This is airspace clearly marked on aeronautical charts and the operational hours both posted and available when you get a briefing from flight service. While it is legal to fly though this type of airspace, it is generally considered risky to fly a GA airplane into the airspace when it is “hot”. That does not excuse the F16 pilot for the mock attacks, but let’s just say that this is not the first time, nor likely the last time, such a thing has happened.

As to your question about whether the F16 was carrying live missiles, guns or bombs, it is possible. Depends on what his mission was that day.


Don’t get me started on this story… Let’s just say that there is a…level of embellishment involved here. Yes that is my opinion…but an educated one.

Listening to the PC-12 driver’s story, his terminology and operational knowledge is suspect…for example, there is a big difference between a TA (traffic advisory) and a RA (resolution advisory) and procedures involved with TCAS traffic alerts. ABQ Center (ZAB) would’ve had at least a primary target return for the F-16. In the recount of events by the PC-12 pilot (which was perplexing at best) he was “under the watchful eye of ABQ Center” and claims that ZAB said “there was no other traffic in the area” hmmm… So, if the ZAB controller had no other aircraft in the area of the PC-12 on his scope how could that be?..hmmm… TCAS works by scanning the vicinity, interrogating the transponders of other aircraft. It then uses the received transponder signals to compute distance, bearing and altitude from the other aircraft. If the PC-12 pilot was getting TA/RA information from his TCAS, that means that his TCAS was processing signals from the F-16’s active transponder, therefore the ZAB controller would’ve/should’ve been able to see the F-16 as well…but the controller claims he didn’t…hmmmm.

As for the Premier pilot’s claims…even a hot dog F-16 pilot isn’t stupid enough to position himself “ten feet” off of the wing of an aircraft with a pilot of unknown skill level… :unamused: I don’t believe the Premier pilot anyway…but for other reasons that are irrelevent in this discussion.


I thought this was odd. The PC-12 guy kept saying it that way too.

I don’t doubt something happened. From the description I assumed the F-16 pilot was looking to see what his wake would do to the PC-12.

Good thing the F-16 didn’t do a barrel roll around the PC-12 a la Fenway.


They’re both full of s#%@! Simple as that. Another waste of time and money.

Two airplanes that normally operate well above Flt Level 180, both VFR in a hot MOA that is 80 miles Northwest of KPHX!!! Come on…

These jokers probably get there kicks sitting in their underwear, eating Pork Rinds, calling in false reports to 911 then turn on their police scanners and giggle like Beavis & Butthead.

Get a life.


So for the skeptics out there the don’t believe anything like this can happen:

I was flying with a friend in his Mooney along the coast from SNA to MYF, passing a mile outside the Camp Pendleton Restricted Area at about 5000’. Perfect VFR day, clear and a million. We were getting flight following advisories. Suddenly, we saw a tiny speck on the horizon. In the blink of an eye, a F-18 passed in front of us close enough to clearly see the pilots face. In another blink it was gone. When we landed, the pilot called Miramar (Top Gun) to report the incident. As he later found out, the pilot had been using us for practice, had us on his tactical radar the whole time and we “were never in any danger.” When you mix very talented, young pilots and very high performance aircraft, stuff happens.


Apples and oranges…

What CAFlier experienced is exactly what you should expect to see in (or near) a MOA. That is completely different than what Mr. Pilatus and Mr. Premier are claiming.

I’ve flown through the same Gladden MOA that these yahoos are talking about and have seen many, many military aircraft pass by very close, hence the term Military Operating Area.

I always think it is pretty cool to have them pass close by, my PTT switch works great to launch my air to airs or pull off a round of 40mm cannons.


Agree here.

Come to South Texas and see how it is.

Been in a Baron and provided target practice for two F-16s before. May scare the crap out of ya but they tend to know what they are doing most of the time.

Kinda of a different encounter, but this happened a couple miles east of our airport with another Baron leaving out of here in 2005. The baron did not have his transponder turned on yet. I have talked to the pilot on several occasions about it also.



Chad wrote: “Don’t get me started on this story… Let’s just say that there is a…level of embellishment involved here. Yes that is my opinion…but an educated one.”

Well, it is normal I think. It happened to me over California flying a King Air. This time, it was F-18, although it never came that close. Yet controllers said that had no knowledge of this. I thought it was OK, and thought it was a good way for the young guys to practice a little bit. If I can be of any help, that’s fine. I don’t think there is any reason to make evasive maneuvers like the PC-12 and Premier did, since the Air Force pilots saw them very well and had no intention to collide with them. Actually, they could feel antsy to see the target jerking around. I don’t think those guys are lying, but they definitely overreacted to what was going on. They should have continued to fly straight and level, enjoying the view of the young eagles in their F-16 learning to use their gun sights. At least, we know that our tax money is spent well. :smiley:


If the event really did happen, the pilots were not trying to evade a known F-16 target… I don’t believe they had visual contact initially. They were turning and jerking to avoid colliding with the unknown a/c on their TCAS at their altitude and area.

I tend to feel the same as mentioned before- The TCAS picks up the transponder of the other a/c. An F-16 pilot may or may not be identing, but if he is, then ATC should see the code also.




929SS Pic



I think military pilots should be allowed to shoot down all Premiers!


Especially the ones flown through the Bagdad MOA by…[edited] :angry:


C’mon az8v8r, give up the story. We’re all friends here


These guys should be happy to have served their country and helped our fine military pilots with their training! :smiley:


“They also serve who only act as moving targets!” :smiling_imp: