WASHINGTON (AFP): Seven US sailors were injured Monday in a Navy F-35C fighter “landing mishap” on an aircraft carrier in the South China Sea, the Navy said.
The accident occurred while the F-35C Lightning II, a stealth combat aircraft, was attempting to land on the USS Carl Vinson during routine flight operations, the US Pacific Fleet said in a statement.
The pilot of the aircraft was in stable condition after ejecting and being rescued by a helicopter.
Seven sailors were injured, three of whom were evacuated to Manila, Philippines for treatment, where their condition was listed as stable.
Four others were treated aboard the ship, and three have been released, the statement said.
No details were provided on the cause of the incident or the fate of the aircraft. The Pacific Fleet said the incident was under investigation.
The Vinson and another US carrier, the USS Abraham Lincoln, and their strike groups began drills Sunday in the South China Sea, following exercises with a Japanese naval ship in the Philippine Sea last week.