US F/A-18 Fighter Jet Crashes In Southwestern Japan
A US F/A-18 Hornet military jet stationed at the Iwakuni base in the Yamaguchi prefecture, crashed in Japan, NHK reported citing the country’s Defense Ministry. The plane crashed around 6:40pm local time in the Kochi Prefecture, the report said, adding that the pilot survived.
Search and rescue efforts are underway to find the Marine pilot who ejected.
Breaking:Search/Rescue effort ongoing for Marine pilot who ejected from F/A-18 today 120 miles southeast of Iwakuni, Japan. Keep in prayers. pic.twitter.com/vSxP5MbMYP
— III MEF Marines (@IIIMEF) December 7, 2016
This incident is the latest in a series of F/A-18 crashes apparently plaguing the Marine Corps. It is the fourth Marine Corps F/A-18 to crash since July. In August, because of an increasing number of training mishaps, the Marines temporarily grounded their entire fleet of F/A-18s. In November two Hornets collided near Miramar in California during a training mission, forcing one of the pilots to eject. In July, another F/A-18C Hornet crash in Twentynine Palms killed 36-year old Marine, Maj. Richard Norton during a training mission.
In late October an F/A-18 pilot had to eject the plane after landing at the Twentynine Palms Strategic Expeditionary Landing Field and suffered minor injuries.
The cause of the incident is under investigation.
The US Marine Corps’ Iwakuni Air Station hosts around 5,000 American troops and is used for Marine pilot training and to conduct air patrols with F/A-18 Hornets.