Monday, January 30, 2006

US jet crashes off Queensland


ABC News Online
January 30, 2005

United States officials have confirmed an FA-18 Hornet strike fighter plane has ditched into the sea while attempting a night landing near Brisbane.

The aircraft was attempting to land on the flight deck of the USS Ronald Reagan during a training exercise early yesterday morning about 120 nautical miles south-east of Brisbane.

Lieutenant Commander Gary Ross says the pilot ejected safely but the $37 million aircraft was lost. The pilot was rescued from the sea.

Lieutenant Commander Ross says five other jets were forced to fly in to Brisbane because they were short on fuel.

"There were five aircraft that were sent into Brisbane International Airport. The reason why they went into Brisbane was because of their fuel state," he said.

The USS Ronald Reagan is the world's largest aircraft carrier. It left Brisbane on Friday after a five-day visit.

"It should be noted that there was no damage or impact in the operational capability of the USS Ronald Reagan during the incident," Lieutenant Commander Ross said.

The US Navy is investigating the accident.



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