Humber Coastguard crews are taking part in a major research operation this morning after a U.S. Air Force fighter jet crashed into the North Sea.
A coastguard helicopter based at Humberside airport was dispatched after an Eagle F-15C plane crashed during a routine training mission this morning.
The plane is based on the 48th Fighter Wing at RAF Lakenheath in Suffolk and had only the pilot on board when it crashed about 74 nautical miles from Flamborough Head, East Yorkshire, at 9.40 am.
The cause of the accident and the pilot’s status are both currently unknown and search and rescue operations are underway involving the Coast Guard and RNLI lifeboats from Bridlington and Scarborough.
A spokeswoman for the Maritime Agency and the coastguard said: “HM Coastguard is coordinating the response after news of a plane that reaches the sea 74 nautical miles off the coast of Flamborough Head has been received.
“Humberside’s HM Coastguard helicopter was sent, along with the RNLI lifeboats from Bridlington and Scarborough.
“Following a Mayday broadcast by HM Coastguard, other nearby ships are heading to the area.
“The plane is believed to have had a person on board.
“We currently have no further information.”
According to The Mirror, the single-seat plane would have flown as part of a four-jet formation before crashing into waters off the Yorkshire coast.
A statement from the 48th Fighter Wing said: “An American Air Force F-15C eagle crashed today at around 0940 in the North Sea.
“The aircraft came from the 48th Fighter Wing, RAF Lakenheath, UK.
“At the time of the accident, the plane was on a routine training mission with a pilot on board.
“The cause of the accident, as well as the status of the pilot, are unknown at the moment and UK Search and Rescue has been called on to support.”