19.2 C
Los Angeles
Monday, September 18, 2023

Is the missing F-35 jet still flying? Pilot left zombie aircraft on auto before ejecting

NewsIs the missing F-35 jet still flying? Pilot left zombie aircraft on auto before ejecting

One of the world’s most high-tech fighter jets is missing over South Carolina after a pilot was forced to eject due to a “mishap”, according to authorities.

However, there is “no concrete evidence” that the F-35B Lightning II has actually crashed, according to a report by WLTX News19 citing officials.

The pilot of the plane – who landed in a residential neighbourhood in North Charleston – enabled an “unspecified automated flight system” before ejecting, according to the outlet.

Now authorities are scrambling to find the plane with the search focused on Lake Moultrie and Lake Marion, according to Senior Master Sgt. Heather Stanton at Joint Base Charleston. Both lakes are north of North Charleston.

The incident occurred around 2pm and although the pilot was taken to a local hospital, he was in stable condition, said Major Melanie Salinas. The pilot’s name has not been released.

The news deepens the mystery surrounding the incident – officials have not yet revealed why the pilot ejected. The $100 million plane has a range of around 1,200 miles but it is unclear how much fuel the aircraft was carrying.

The F-35 is a stealth plane meaning it is more difficult to detect than regular aircraft. In addition, the plane’s transponder isn’t working for an unknown reason, according to a spokesperson for Joint Base Charleston, Jeremy Huggins.

Huggins told The Washington Post: “That’s why we put out the public request for help. The aircraft is stealth, so it has different coatings and different designs that make it more difficult than a normal aircraft to detect.”

Joint Base Charleston has asked the public to assist in the search for the aircraft prompting a savage response from Congresswoman Nancy Mace.

JBC said in a tweet: “We’re working with MCASBeaufortSC to locate an F-35 that was involved in a mishap this afternoon. The pilot ejected safely. If you have any information that may help our recovery teams locate the F-35, please call the Base Defence Operations Center at 843-963-3600.”

Nancy Mace, who represents the area, responded: “How in the hell do you lose an F-35? How is there not a tracking device and we’re asking the public to what, find a jet and turn it in?”

Follow our social media accounts here on http://facebook.com/ExpressUSNews and ExpressUSNews

Check out our other content

Check out other tags:

Most Popular Articles