Leaked video has emerged that shows the final frenzied moments in which an F-35C fighter crashed into the deck of the USS Carl Vinson last month before sliding off the landing deck of the aircraft carrier in what appears to be a ball of flame.
The leaked footage appears to have been shot using a cell phone that in turn was filming a computer monitor displaying surveillance footage of the accident, according to the Daily Mail.
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“We are aware that there has been an unauthorized release of video footage from flight deck cameras onboard USS Carl Vinson (CVN 70) of the F-35C Lightning II crash that occurred Jan. 24, in the South China Sea. There is an ongoing investigation into both the crash and the unauthorized release of the shipboard video footage,” Cmdr. Zach Harrell, spokesman for Commander, Naval Air Forces, said.
The crash left the pilot, who ejected from the plane, injured, along with six sailors on the aircraft carrier.
The clip shows the plane approaching the deck, then hitting with a crash after what appears to be voice calling out for the pilot to pull out of the landing attempt.
After the plane passes the field of view from one camera, a second shows it bursting into flames as it hits the deck and eventually slides into the South China Sea.
Last month, unofficial video was released showing the plane flying over the aircraft carrier and an image was released of the F-35C sitting in the sea.
VIDEO of US Navy jet crash in South China Sea released
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Peter Layton, a former Royal Australian Air Force officer now at the Griffith Asia Institute, told CNN that the plane appeared to have control problems as it approached the deck.
“That’s really, really scary,” said
“As the aircraft is coming down the flaps are working overtime backwards and forwards. It looks like the pilot has lost control and is suffering oscillations,” he said.
The Navy is expected to seek to recover the plane to prevent China from salvaging it.
“The service is almost certain to try to retrieve as much of the jet as possible to prevent sensitive components, and the information about aircraft’s advanced capabilities that might be gleaned from them, from falling into the hands of America’s competitors, such as Russia or China,” Joseph Trevithick wrote on The Drive.
“The depth of the water at the site of this U.S. Navy accident, as well as weather and other environmental factors, will all be among the various elements the service can be expected to take into account when determining whether such a recovery operation is practical. If the aircraft sunk, just determining its final resting place could be a complicated affair,” Trevithick wrote.
This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.