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No Word on Pilot After Navy Jet Crashes in California

It was on a routine training mission at the time
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Jul 31, 2019 5:26 PM CDT
This July 17, 2019, photo provided by the U.S. Air Force shows a Navy F/A-18 Super Hornet in flight after refueling over the Pacific Ocean near the coast of Brisbane, Australia.   (Senior Airman Elora J. Martinez/U.S. Air Force via AP)

(Newser) – A US Navy F/A-18 Super Hornet jet crashed Wednesday in the California desert and a search-and-rescue operation was underway, officials said. The single-seat warplane went down at 9:50am during a routine training mission north of the Naval Air Weapons Station at China Lake, a remote expanse of the Mojave Desert, said Lt. Cmdr. Lydia Bock, spokeswoman for Naval Air Station Lemoore in California's Central Valley. "The status of the pilot is unknown at this time," Bock said about four hours after the crash, per the AP.

The jet was from strike fighter squadron VFA-151 stationed at Lemoore. The squadron is part of an air group attached to the aircraft carrier USS John C. Stennis. The Super Hornet is a twin-engine warplane designed to fly from either aircraft carriers or ground bases on both air-superiority and ground-attack missions. China Lake is about 120 miles north of Los Angeles.

(Read more Navy stories.)

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