Search launched after US fighter jet crashes into sea off Yorkshire coast
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A search team scrambled to find the pilot after the plane ditched into the sea this morning (Monday, June 15).
It is unclear what caused the F-15 fighter plane to crash 74 miles off Flamborough Head, but the US Air Force has confirmed that only one pilot was on board.
It said a 'major operation' has been launched after the F-15C Eagle fighter jet from the 48th Fighter Wing at RAF Lakenheath in Suffolk crashed into the sea at around 9:40am while on a training mission.
The HM Coastguard helicopter from Humberside Airport has been deployed as well as lifeboats from Bridlington and Scarborough.
In a statement, RAF Lakenheath said: "A U.S. Air Force F-15C Eagle crashed at approximately 0940 today in the North Sea
"The aircraft was from the 48th Fighter Wing, RAF Lakenheath, United Kingdom.
"At the time of the accident, the aircraft was on a routine training mission with one pilot on board.
"The cause of the crash as well as the status of the pilot are unknown at this time and UK Search and Rescue have been called to support."
A spokesman for HM Coastguard said: "HM Coastguard is coordinating the response after reports were received of an aeroplane going down into the sea 74 nautical miles off Flamborough Head.
"The HM Coastguard helicopter from Humberside has been sent along with Bridlington and Scarborough RNLI lifeboats.
"Following a Mayday broadcast by HM Coastguard, other vessels nearby are heading to the area.
"It’s believed the aircraft had one person on board."
The 48th Fighter Wing is the US Air Force's only F-15 fighter wing based in Europe.
Almost 6,000 military personnel are attached to the unit.