Search for pilot after Navy jet crashes off Key West

Cheryl Sanders
March 15, 2018

A Navy fighter jet reportedly crashed off the coast of Key West, Fla., on Wednesday.

The jet crashed as it was on its final approach to a base around 4:30 p.m., according to WTVJ. Crews are searching for the pilots. Eastern time. It crashed into the water about a mile east of the runway.

Rescue crews initially recovered both aviators from the water and transported them to the Lower Keys Medical Center, but the Navy later tweeted that the flyers did not survive. An investigation is underway to determine the cause of the crash.

Witnesses said it appeared the plane had some sort of explosion in the air. A rescue helicopter dropped two divers at the crash site, but she did not know if they found anyone.

The Associated Press reports the pilots are based out of Naval Air Station Oceana in Virginia Beach. "In the air, I saw fire".

"I can confirm we have an F/A-18 down", Commander Dave Hecht told local media, confirming both pilots managed to eject.

Other reports by iNewsToday