US military aircraft crashes in the North Sea

A US Air Force (USAF) F-15E Eagle fighter jet, is pictured as it prepares to land at RAF (Royal Air Force) Lakenheath, east of England, on June 15, 2020 | Chris Radburn/AFP via Getty Images

Pilot missing after F-15 aircraft crash.

LONDON — A U.S. Air Force pilot is missing after a fighter jet crashed in the North Sea during a routine training mission Monday morning.

The F-15 aircraft, from the 48th Fighter Wing based at RAF Lakenheath in the east of England, crashed at around 9:30 a.m. local time, with one pilot on board.

A search and rescue mission is underway. The cause of the crash is currently unknown.

Colonel Will Marshall, commander of the 48th Fighter Wing, also known as the Liberty Wing, said: “We will provide updates as they become available while prioritizing respect and consideration for the pilot’s family. We’re extremely grateful for the timely response of our U.K. counterparts in support of these recovery efforts and remain hopeful that our Liberty Wing airman will be located and recovered.”

A Downing Street spokesperson said a U.K. search and rescue team was “working closely with the U.S.”

A spokeswoman for HM Coastguard, quoted by the BBC, said a helicopter had been sent from Humberside in north-east England along with lifeboats

“Following a Mayday broadcast by HM Coastguard, other vessels nearby are heading to the area,” the spokesperson said.

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