Japanese F-35A Fighter Crashes over Pacific

Society

Tokyo, April 10 (Jiji Press)--A Japanese Air Self-Defense Force F-35A fighter jet crashed after going missing during an exercise over the Pacific Ocean Tuesday night, the Defense Ministry said Wednesday.

The ministry concluded that the cutting-edge stealth fighter jet with a major in his 40s on board crashed, as pieces seen to be of vertical tails were recovered from waters near where the aircraft disappeared from radar and were later confirmed as belonging to the missing jet.

The pilot had declared an end to the exercise just before the ASDF lost contact with the fighter, according to the ministry.

A search is underway for the pilot and the aircraft body.

The jet, together with three other F-35As, took off from the ASDF's Misawa base in Aomori Prefecture, northern Japan, for a nighttime training flight around 7 p.m. (10 a.m. GMT) Tuesday.

[Copyright The Jiji Press, Ltd.]

Jiji Press