A “landing mishap” by a fighter jet injured seven sailors Monday on an aircraft carrier located in the South China Sea, according to the U.S. Navy.
The accident occurred on the deck of the USS Carl Vinson during “routine flight operations,” the Navy said in a public statement. A military helicopter recovered the pilot of the F-35C Lightning II jet after the pilot successfully ejected from the plane.
— U.S. Naval Institute (@NavalInstitute) January 24, 2022
Three out of seven sailors injured during the incident were transported to a medical treatment facility in Manila, Philippines. All three are in stable condition, the Navy said.
The other four sailors were treated onboard the aircraft carrier. Three of them have been released, according to the Navy. The cause of the mishap and further details are still under investigation. (RELATED: 8,500 Troops To Possibly Deploy To Eastern Europe)
Lt. Mark Langford, a spokesman for the Navy’s 7th Fleet in Japan, said the flight deck of the carrier suffered only “superficial” damage, according to CNN. The Carl Vinson and its aircraft have since returned to standard operations.
The F-35C Lightning II jet involved in the crash is among the most advanced types of fighter jet in the world, NBC News San Diego reported. The USS Carl Vinson previously underwent a 17-month renovation that cost $367 million to provide space for the fighter jets.
The USS Carl Vinson deployed from San Diego in August 2021 after the renovations, according to NBC San Diego. The aircraft carrier can hold 65 aircraft and house over 5,000 crewmembers.