Confusion as Swiss air force flies over the wrong festival
A Swiss aerial display team missed the target of their flyover on Sunday afternoon by some six kilometres. The army said the mistake was “not a worrying one”.
The Patrouille Suisse – the red and white squadron that flies in formation over special events – was eagerly, and in vain, awaited by residents of Langenbruck (Canton Basel Country) on Sunday.
Instead of passing over a gathering to mark the centenary of the death of local aviation pioneer Oskar Bider, the planes flew over a yodelling festival in nearby Mümliswil.
According to a ministry of defence spokesman, the team leader spotted the large white tent of the yodelling get-together and, assuming it was the target, flew overhead. An unauthorised helicopter in the area added to the confusion.
The machines being used – F-5E Tiger II jets – aren’t equipped with GPS devices, the ministry added; they are over 40 years old and no longer used in real combat situations.
“Navigation is done on the basis of a map, a pen, and human sight,” the spokesman said.
The commander of the aerial display team apologised for the mix-up on Monday.
In compliance with the JTI standards
More: SWI swissinfo.ch certified by the Journalism Trust Initiative
Contributions under this article have been turned off. You can find an overview of ongoing debates with our journalists here. Please join us!
If you want to start a conversation about a topic raised in this article or want to report factual errors, email us at email@example.com.