F-35 Has Crashed In Florida, Second Aircraft Loss For Eglin Air Force Base In Five Days

The aircraft was on a routine night training mission when the incident occurred. 

USAF

Details remain scarce at this time, but an F-35 Joint Strike Fighter that was flying out of Eglin AFB, which is located on the Florida panhandle, has crashed. Thankfully, the pilot was able to eject and is safe. The incident occurred at around 9:30 pm local time and the F-35A was on a routine night training mission. 

This is the second crash of an aircraft operating out of the base in less than a week, with an F-22 Raptor going down on Friday, May 15th. Thankfully, in that incident, the pilot was also able to eject and survive the mishap. If the F-35 is destroyed, it would be the third crash of an F-35 that resulted in a total write-off of the airframe. 

Eglin AFB is home to a large number of aircraft. It is a major training base for F-35, and more recently, F-22 aircraft, the latter of which were displaced after Hurricane Michael ravaged nearby Tyndall AFB. Eglin AFB has myriad other missions, including being the home of weapons development for the Air Force's tactical aircraft communities and supporting other developmental missions. The nearby Eglin Range Complex hosts all types of training and weapons development activities, among other events. Duke Field lies deep within in it, and Hurlburt Field, home of Air Force Special Operations Command's headquarters, as well as the Navy's primary air training base of Naval Air Station Pensacola, sit very close by. As such, the base sees many types of aircraft frequent its expansive aprons and runways and the nearby ranges. 

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We will update this story as more information comes available. 

Contact the author: Tyler@thedrive.com