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Navy F/A-18D Fighter Crashes into Virginia Beach Apartment Complex, No Fatalities

A two-seat Navy F/A-18D Hornet aircraft crashed into a populated neighborhood shortly after takeoff from Naval Air Station Oceana in Virginia Beach, Va., on April 6, 2012.   Both aircrew were able to safely eject from the aircraft, and are reported to be in good condition.  No one in the Mayfair Mews apartment complex where the plane crashed was killed, although some were treated for injuries, and several buildings in the complex were destroyed or damaged by fire from the crash.

FA-18D remains, courtyard

The remains of an F/A-18D Hornet assigned to Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 106, April 6, 2012 lie in the courtyard of an apartment complex, covered with firefighting foam. U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Antonio P. Turretto Ramos

“My thoughts and prayers are with our citizens and families who have been impacted by the tragic crash today in Virginia Beach by an aircraft from NAS Oceana,” Navy Adm. John C. Harvey Jr., commander of U.S. Fleet Forces Command based at Norfolk, Va., said in a statement. “I deeply regret that some in our community have lost their homes, and I, like many, pray for the well-being of all.”

The F/A-18D aircraft, assigned to Strike Fighter Squadron 106 (VFA-106), was on a routine training mission. VFA-106 is the East Coast Fleet Replacement Squadron that trains and prepares Navy and Marine Corps F/A-18 pilots and weapon systems officers to assume duties with deployable operational fighting units.

Harvey said a complete investigation into the cause of the crash will be made. He also pledged to “share all information we have as soon as we are able to do so.”

By

Capt. Edward H. Lundquist, U.S. Navy (Ret.) is a senior-level communications professional with more than...