According to the first reports, the pilot is safe after ejecting from a USMC F-35B.
An F-35B Lighting II jet belonging to Marine Fighter Attack Training Squadron 501 (VMFAT-501) with the 2nd Marine Aircraft Wing based at MCAS (Marine Corps Air Station) Beaufort, South Carolina, has crashed on Sunday Sept. 18, 2023.
The pilot ejected safely from the STOVL (Short Take Off Vertical Landing) variant of the Joint Strike Fighter and taken to a hospital where they are in stable condition.
In a post on X, Joint Base Charleston says they are responding to a ‘mishap’ involving a pilot being ejected from a plane on Sunday. Interestingly, it looks like the aircraft has not yet been located, despite the pilot being recovered.
We’re working with @MCASBeaufortSC to locate an F-35 that was involved in a mishap this afternoon. The pilot ejected safely. If you have any information that may help our recovery teams locate the F-35, please call the Base Defense Operations Center at 843-963-3600.
— Joint Base Charleston (@TeamCharleston) September 17, 2023
On Sept. 28, 2018, another U.S. Marine F-35B Lightning II of the Marine Fighter Attack Training Squadron 501 (VMFAT-501), the “Warlords”, the training squadron equipped with the STOVL aircraft and serving as the Fleet Replacement Squadron, crashed near Beaufort Marine Corps Air Station outside of Beaufort, South Carolina on the U.S. East Coast. The pilot ejected safely. That was the first ever F-35 crash.
This is a developing story, we will update the article as more details emerge.