A military fighter jet that left Joint Base Andrews crashed about six miles southwest of the base, officials say.
US Air Force officials told Fox News that an F-16 from D. C. Air National Guard went down around 9:15 a.m. south of National Harbor in Maryland near Andrews Air Force Base.
The pilot inside ejected safely and was taken to a local hospital with non-life threatening injuries.
“The pilot ejected safely in an unpopulated area. More information will be provided as it’s available,” a US Air Force official told Fox News.
Prince George’s County fire department spokesman Mark Brady told WRC-TV that one pilot parachuted out of the aircraft and was picked up by a military helicopter. He said the pilot was found in the same general area as the plane.
#DEVELOPING: Piscataway Road/Rt-233 CLOSED between Tippet Road and Steed Road due to military jet crash in Clinton, Md. More info to come. pic.twitter.com/CkPhHZAJ8A
In a statement, D. C. Air National Guard officials said the aircraft was flying along a second jet in a “routine training mission” around the greater Washington area.
Brady saidhomes in the area are being evacuated. He says there are no other reports of injuries. He didn’t know whether anything on the ground was hit.
A witness told Fox 5 DC/WTTG that he was sitting on his porch when he heard a loud explosion. He said the jet was on fire and he saw the pilot eject.
“It was the biggest fire ball I’ve ever seen in my life,” Patrick Dotson said.
He said he ran into the woods after the plane crashed and saw the pilot standing up. Dotson said the pilot asked if the neighborhood was OK because he had live rounds on board.
Since 9/11, there is always at least one F-16 on eight minute alert status to take off in the case of emergency.