The Australian Defence Force is closely watching a US investigation into the fiery Easter Sunday crash of an F/A-18D ‘classic’ Hornet into a Virginia Beach apartment building.
The US Navy has blamed the crash on a “catastrophic” system failure but is in the early stages of its investigation. Both pilots were able to eject safely and no one on the ground was seriously injured in what has been described as an Easter miracle.
“As an integral part of the worldwide F/A-18 fraternity, the RAAF will receive data regarding the cause of the crash when it is available,” a defence spokesperson said in a statement. “Any procedures suggested by the USN, relevant to our particular fleet, will be immediately addressed by the RAAF.”
The RAAF operates a fleet of single-seat F/A-18A and two-seat F/A-18B “classic” Hornets based at Williamtown. The F/A-18D is an upgraded version of the two-seat variant.