Marine F18 Goes Down in Northern Nevada

CORONADO, Calif. (NNS)…Navy and Lander County Nevada Sheriff’s Office personnel continue to search for a U.S. military pilot whose aircraft crashed on a training flight for the Naval Strike and Air Warfare Center’s “TOPGUN” course at Naval Air Station (NAS) Fallon, Nev., yesterday.

The crash of the F/A-18C aircraft occurred at approximately 3 p.m., PST, on the Fallon Range Training Complex., approximately 70 miles east of NAS Fallon.

Initial reports from the scene indicate the aircraft is a total loss. It took Navy personnel several hours to reach the crash site as it was located in remote, rugged, mountainous terrain. A snow storm overnight in the area also hindered the effort.

The Navy’s initial news release incorrectly identified the aircraft as a U.S. Navy Hornet but it was actually a U.S. Marine Corps F/A-18C on loan to the Naval Strike and Air Warfare Center for use as a training aircraft.

There are no reports of any other injuries or property damage associated with the crash.

The aircraft was not carrying any weapons or other munitions on the training flight.

An investigation will be carried out to determine the cause of the crash.

In accordance with Department of Defense policy, the name of the pilot will be withheld until 24 hours following notification of next of kin.

The Naval Strike and Air Warfare Center is the center of excellence for naval aviation training and tactics development. It provides service to aircrews, squadrons and air wings throughout the Navy through flight training, academic instructional classes, and direct operational and intelligence support.

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