F-35 Being Flown By Contractor Back To Factory For Servicing Crashes In New Mexico
An F-35 military aircraft of the Royal Netherlands Air Force trains on targets at the NATO training location at the Vliehors Range on Vlieland.

A U.S. Military aircraft reportedly crashed in New Mexico on Tuesday shortly after taking off on a flight to a Lockheed factory so it could be serviced.

A U.S. official told ABC News that the plane was an F-35, which belonged to the U.S. Marine Corps.

The plane “was being flown by a defense contract management agency pilot at the time of the crash,” KOAT reported.

“Earlier today just before 2 p.m. we started getting reports of a possible aircraft down,” said Lt. Jason Fejer, the Public Information Officer for Albuquerque Fire Rescue. “Bernalillo County was the first on scene here, they did confirm downed aircraft and started making a search for the pilot and starting fire suppression efforts.”

Albuquerque Fire Rescue, Bernalillo County, and Kirtland Air Force Base quickly joined efforts to respond to the incident.

“The pilot was able to get out, that pilot was transported with serious injuries,” he said, adding that the pilot is now in the hospital and that two other civilians who were at the scene were also evaluated.

“The road is going to be shut down here for an extended time, Kirtland and the FAA will be taking over this investigation,” he continued. “So we’re advising people to please avoid the area, let this investigation run its course, and they will get things back open up as soon as possible. So to recap, we did have an aircraft go down, pilot was able to escape and was transported to hospital, a fire has been extinguished. They’re in the process of cleaning up the scene and kind of mopping up any hotspots. And that’s where we’re at for now.”



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