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Taiwan’s Republic of China Air Force (ROCAF) has reported that six F-16 fighter jets sustained minor damage during a powerful earthquake on April 3rd, 2024.

The 7.2-magnitude quake, the strongest to hit Taiwan in 25 years, struck the eastern coast near Hualien, where the ROCAF’s 5th Tactical Composite Wing is based. This wing operates a fleet of F-16Vs and F-5 fighter jets.

Thankfully, the damage to the F-16s appears to be superficial. According to the ROCAF, the jets suffered minor scratches and damage, likely caused by the shaking and movement of boarding ladders during the earthquake. These issues are considered readily repairable and will not affect the combat readiness of the aircraft.

While the earthquake caused significant damage to buildings in Hualien, the resilience of the ROCAF’s aircraft and their ability to sustain minimal damage is a positive outcome. The prompt response by the Air Force in addressing these minor repairs ensures that the F-16s remain mission-capable.