Military training jet crashes in Texas, injuring both pilots

Three homes were damaged when the plane, with an instructor and trainee, crashed near Fort Worth

Smoke rises from the site where a military training aircraft crashed into a neighbourhood in Lake Worth, Texas, on Sunday. Jorge Moreno Jr via Reuters
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A military training jet crashed on Sunday in a neighbourhood near Fort Worth, Texas, injuring the two pilots and damaging three homes but not seriously hurting anyone on the ground, authorities said.

Both pilots ejected from the plane before it crashed in Lake Worth, which is just west of Fort Worth.

“This incident could have been much worse knowing that this plane went down in a residential area,” Lake Worth Fire Chief Ryan Arthur said.

The crash was reported to authorities shortly before 11am.

Police Chief JT Manoushagian said one pilot’s parachute became tangled in powerlines.

One of the pilots was flown to a hospital in Dallas and was in a critical condition, the Fort Worth Fire Department said. The other was driven to a hospital in Fort Worth.

The chief of naval air training in Corpus Christi said on Facebook that the crashed jet was a Navy T-45C Goshawk assigned to Training Air Wing 2 at Naval Air Station Kingsville, about 675 kilometres south of Lake Worth.

He said the instructor pilot was in stable condition and the trainee aviator’s condition was unknown but he was alive and being treated.

The post said they were conducting a routine training flight from the Corpus Christi International Airport, about 560km south of Lake Worth, along the Gulf Coast.

Three residents of the damaged homes were treated at the scene and released, the Fort Worth Fire Department said. The crash cut power to 44 homes in the area and utility crews were working to restore it.

“We are incredibly fortunate that the plane crashed in the backyards of the homes and not the residences themselves,” the fire department said.

Two off-duty Fort Worth firefighters saw the crash and were the first on the scene where they tended to the injured pilots, the department said.

Mr Arthur said the people who live in the damaged homes will be displaced because of the crash. The neighbourhood is near the Naval Air Station Joint Reserve Base.

Officials said representatives from the military were at the crash scene.

“Our hearts go out to these military members and their families,” Mr Manoushagian said.

“I would imagine that for a pilot, this is the day that you dread, that you hope never comes."

Updated: September 19, 2021, 10:07 PM