Pilot Ejects Before F-22 Fighter Jet Crashes During Routine Training Flight on Air Force Base in Florida
The pilot is currently in "stable condition," the Air Force said Friday
A pilot ejected during a training flight at an Air Force base in Florida on Friday.
The pilot, whose identity has not been released, was taken to a hospital on the Eglin Air Force Base to be evaluated and observed, the Air Force said in a statement on Friday. He is currently in stable condition, though it was unclear what if any injuries he sustained.
The F-22 Raptor fighter jet crashed around 9:15 a.m. on Friday on the Eglin AFB's test and training range, about 12 miles northeast of the main base, the Air Force said.
The pilot was the only individual on board the aircraft, which is the Air Force's newest fighter plane. The Air Force said that the crash took place during a "routine training flight with the 33rd Fighter Wing," and that it will be investigated by a board of officers.
There were four other jets that were meant to be part of the same mission and already in the air at the time of the crash, USA Today reported Friday. Those planes, another F-22 Raptor in addition to an F-35 fighter jet and two T-38 training jets, were recalled after the first F-22 went down, the outlet reported.
RELATED VIDEO: 5 Dead After Small Plane Crashes Near Louisiana Airport
The F-22 Raptor "represents an exponential leap in warfighting capabilities," according to the Air Force, because of its "combination of stealth, supercruise, maneuverability, and integrated avionics, coupled with improved supportability."
The advanced aircraft is "a critical component of the Global Strike Task Force," according to the Air Force.
The Air Force has 183 F-22s in its inventory, according to USA Today.