Update: Pilot listed as stable after Navy F/A-18E Super Hornet crash in Virginia Beach

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

UPDATE:The F/A-18 pilot who was injured after he ejected from his Navy F/A-18E Super Hornet was initially listed in critical condition but has now been upgraded to stable.  

He has been taken to Navy Medical Portsmouth for more treatment. 

A Navy F/A-18E Super Hornet aircraft crashed approximately 45 miles f18eoff the coast of Virginia Beach around 2:30 p.m. on Wednesday.

The jet was from Strike Fighter Squadron 143 (VFA-143) attached to Carrier Air Wing Seven at Oceana Naval Air Station. It was conducting routine training at the time of the crash.

The Navy says the single pilot was able to eject the aircraft before the crash. He deployed a life raft and was recovered by a good samaritan fishing vessel before being taken to Sentara Norfolk General Hospital by a Navy MH-60 Sea Hawk.

The Navy reports he was conscious when he was picked up but that he is in critical condition.

Jet ejection process can be quick and violent, causing injury
Team Coverage: Pilot arrives at hospital after Navy F/A-18E crash

The USS Oak Hill (LSD-51) is currently on scene collecting debris. The Navy still has no plans in place to recover the jet.

The Coast Guard also assisted the Navy following the crash, with the Coast Guard Cutter Elm and Coast Guard Cutter Albacore both responding to the scene.

Virginia Beach Fire Rescue were notified when the incident occurred. They were told to stand down and that their assistance was not needed.

The Navy will investigate the cause of the accident.

CBS This Morning got in touch with the mother of the boat captain Bryan Daniels of the Joyce D, the boat that helped to rescue the pilot today.

Here is the information he faxed to his mother:

“There was a Navy jet crash in shore of us. The other jets kept buzzing me until I got them on 16. They got me to go to the crash site. There was one survival. We tried to get him on boat. But he couldn’t grab nothing. All he could do was say he couldn’t breathe and help me. And then by that time four helicopters got there. And put a swimmer out and they picked him out of the water. That’s about as real as it gets. I hope he makes it. We are back steaming up to Cape May Rocks.”

Additional details will be posted as they become available.

Click here to see all of our team coverage of the crash.


    • Mindy Peach

      Are you kidding….Portsmouth Naval Hospital is nothing more than a training field for corpsmen and doctors who have just entered the medical field. Having been a Navy wife…..I had my share of poor medical services from the Naval hospitals….both here and in Italy !!! Plus if the damned Navy can’t keep our men safe and sound while they are training here……what makes you think the Portsmouth Naval Hospital would be able to treat the victims of that crash effectively ????

  • Mindy Peach

    What is up with all these planes crashing around here ???? Maaan, this is just not acceptable as military functions go here…….I hope someone higher up is going to do something about these tragedies. I just feel so much sorrow for the families of these fine men who were victims of this kind of poor mechanical checking on the part of the Navy !!!!!

  • momof2

    My prayers go out to the families of these crash victims as well as the survivors. I do have to say that I’m glad these two training missions were over the water and not over the schools and neighborhoods here in Virginia Beach.

  • Military Member

    I just want to say that first off, making jokes in the comments section shows EXTREME DISRESPECT for the families of the 7 flight crew we lost last week, and it serves as a reminder to the family of this Hornet pilot that you really don’t value the life of the family member they are praying will make a full recovery.

    Secondly, I want to thank the media!

    THANK YOU for using this video footage that you receive to boost your ratings!

    THANK YOU for using this video footage to gain viewership!

    THANK YOU for using this video to help your station gain attention!

    THANK YOU for showing us that the families that are suffering get to do so even more when they turn on the television – or even surf the news section of Google or Bing!

    Don Henley’s hit song, “Dirty Laundry” definitely applies here:

    “Kick ’em when they’re up, kick ’em when they’re down, kick ’em in the shin, kick ’em all around!”

  • Youallsuck

    It’s amazing how everyone in the comments section is an aerospace engineer and a detective who somehow already know the cause of every mishap and feel confident directing blame. They must also know that “all the planes crashing around here” actually amounts to a total mishap rate of .16 per 100,000 flight hours. Not 16, .16! Aviation mishaps occurring in Virginia Beach are a statistical anomaly. A tiny bump in a graph. The fact that they happened within view of your tiny brains does not make them more important.

Comments are closed.

Notice: you are using an outdated browser. Microsoft does not recommend using IE as your default browser. Some features on this website, like video and images, might not work properly. For the best experience, please upgrade your browser.