North Sea US jet crash: Pilot found dead

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Image source, US Air Force
Image caption,
An F-15C Eagle from the 48th Fighter Wing at RAF Lakenheath crashed into the North Sea on Monday

The pilot of a US Air Force fighter jet which crashed into the North Sea has been found dead.

The F-15C Eagle, from the 48th Fighter Wing at RAF Lakenheath in Suffolk, crashed shortly after 09:30 BST while on a training mission.

The wreckage of the plane, thought to have crashed 74 nautical miles off the East Yorkshire coast, was found earlier.

The cause of the crash is currently unknown.

Col Will Marshall of the 48th Fighter Wing at RAF Lakenheath said: "The pilot of the downed F-15C Eagle from the 48th Fighter Wing has been located, and confirmed deceased.

Media caption,
RAF Lakenheath: US Air Force pilot confirmed dead off UK coast

"We will not release the name of the pilot until after all next of kin notifications have been completed.

"This is a tragic loss for the 48th Fighter Wing community, and our deepest condolences go out to the pilot's family and the 493rd Fighter Squadron."

The F15C, a single-seater air defence fighter, is a model of jet that has been used by the US Air Force since 1979.

RAF Lakenheath is the largest US Air Force-operated base in England and home to its only F-15 fighter wing in Europe.

More than 4,000 US service men and women are stationed there.

Media caption,
Footage this morning from the Yorkshire coast showed fog shrouding the North Sea

The 48th Fighter Wing shared an image of three jets in flight on Monday morning.

The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites.View original tweet on Twitter

In October 2015, US pilot Maj Taj Sareen died when his F-18 Hornet jet crashed on farmland near RAF Lakenheath.

An investigation found the 34-year-old had not reported problems with his aircraft to engineers prior to take-off, because he was concerned it would delay his colleagues.

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