Navy jet crashes off Key West; rescue underway

17 March, 2018, 01:43 | Author: Laverne Higgins
  • A U.S. Navy F  A-18 Hornet jet crashed off the coast of Key West Florida on Wednesday an official told Fox News

The jet was a part of Strike Fighter Squadron 213, also known as the "Blacklions", which is based out of Naval Air Station Oceana in Virginia Beach. The board is comprised of highly-qualified aviation officers.

A U.S. Navy jet is seen after it crashed near Naval Air Station Key West off the coast the Florida Keys, in this picture taken from social media, March 14, 2018. Barbie Wilson had stopped to watch the F/A-18 flying overhead when she saw what she called a "massive malfunction" in midair.

One witness told the local news channel FL Keys News that he saw fire on the aircraft before it rushed to the sea.

The two were recovered in the water approximately a mile east of the Boca Chica Field runway after the crash around 4:30 p.m.

Dana White, Pentagon spokeswoman, said the cause of the F/A-18 Super Hornet crash Wednesday off the coast of Key West, Florida, is still under investigation.

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The crash investigation will include a review of aircraft maintenance, aircraft flight hours, and an assessment of the physical condition of the two aircrew killed and their activities prior to the accident, according to The Associated Press.

The Navy said NAS Key West is equipped with a sophisticated Tactical Combat Training System (TCTS), similar to the one depicted in the popular movie "Top Gun", which tracks and records aerial maneuvers. "Please join me with your thoughts and prayers for both aviators, their families and our incredible U.S. Navy", he wrote.

Johnson was piloting the Super Hornet at the time of the incident, while King was serving as weapons systems operator, the Navy said.

"They were coming in to land like they always do", he said.

The officials say the F/A-18 Hornet's two crew members ejected, but no other details are available.

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