F-16 Fighter Fires At School In New Jersey

F-16 Fighter Fires At School In New Jersey (NBC10)

A National Guard F-16 fighter jet on a nighttime training mission Wednesday fired 25 rounds of ammunition that tore through an intermediate school. No one was injured. The military is investigating the incident that damaged Little Egg Harbor Intermediate School shortly after 11 p.m. Police were called to the area when a custodian heard what sounded like someone running across the roof of the school. The custodian was the only person in the school at the time.

Police Chief Mark Siino on Thursday said police officers noticed punctures in the roof. Ceiling tiles had fallen into classrooms and there were scratch marks in the asphalt outside the building. The 2-inch long bullets are made of lead and do not explode, said Col. Brian Webster, commander of the 177th Fighter Wing of the New Jersey Air National Guard. It was unclear why the shots were fired, Webster said.

New Jersey public schools were closed Thursday because of a teachers convention. The Ocean County school is scheduled to reopen Monday.

The pilot of the single-seat jet was supposed to fire at a target on the ground three and half miles away from school on the Warren Grove firing range, Webster said.

My instinct is to not make any jokes about teachers unions, public schools, New Jersey, or the National Guard. That wouldn’t be right.

Update (11-5, 0943): D.C. Guard Jet Fires, Hitting N.J. School (WaPo)

A D.C. Air National Guard fighter jet based at Andrews Air Force Base accidentally fired about two dozen rounds of ammunition during a nighttime training mission, piercing the roof of a school in southern New Jersey, authorities said yesterday. No one was injured in the incident, which is under military investigation.


Col. Jeff Johnson of the 113th Wing of the D.C. Air National Guard said the unit routinely trains at the Warren Grove Gunnery Range, a 2,400-acre area about 3.5 miles from the school in Little Egg Harbor. The plane was flying at about 7,000 feet and was within the range when the rounds were fired, officials said. “The key is, it was inadvertent,” O’Brien said. “It was not directed at the school.”

Well, one would hope, you moron. Geez, what is it about D.C. officials?

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James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm veteran. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.


  1. Paul says:

    I was going to blog it and ask if the roof was painted red, then I tried a blue on blue joke… Couldn’t get a hook so I skipped it. Freaky though

  2. David Harris says:

    Phase 2 of No Child Left Behind???

  3. libs4lunch says:

    Actually, the pilot went there as a kid and decided to live out one of the “Calvin and Hobbes” fantasies.

  4. ken says:

    Seriously, though, you all know that if this were a school in Iraq it would have been reported as a terrorist center regardless of the circumstances.

  5. McGehee says:

    Grow up, Ken.