Left engine of the Boeing F/A-18D strike fighter belonging to the Royal Malaysian Air Force experienced a flameout 50 feet above the ground, during a solo display on Tuesday, at the Langkawi International Maritime and Aerospace Exhibition, LIMA 2019.
“I was looking for 280 knots airspeed before pitching my nose up for a high-alpha vertical climb; I was just skimming the runway at this point. Then, I heard a loud bang… and the entire aircraft began to shudder,” Major Goh Keng Loon told The New Straits Times.
During this low-level transition, the left General Electric F-404-400 EPE afterburning turbofan engine ingested a foreign object.
Observers on the ground saw orange flame belching out of the left engine nozzle. The fuel and flame mixture from the engine floated down to the ground and ignited the dry grass on the airfield.
After experiencing a loud explosion due to the flameout, the pilot immediately executed emergency procedures to land the aircraft safely.