Two UK fighter jet crew rescued safely after ejecting aircraft in flames

LONDON: Two crew members from the United Kingdom's Royal Air Force (RAF) ejected their aircraft before it burst into flames and crashed in the sea off the west coast of Scotland during a routine training mission, local media reported Thursday.

The incident occurred at around 2:45 p.m. local time when the pilot sent a May Day distress signal, but fearing the aircraft could explode, the pilot and navigator ejected, the BBC reported. They were rescued shortly after by a Stornoway Coastguard helicopter and transported to a hospital in Inverness, Scotland.

The Tornado GR4 pilot and navigator took off from RAF Lossiemouth and are thought to have only suffered minor injuries: a dislocated knee and sprained ankle.

British Ministry of Defense spokesman Tom Bennett confirmed that the crew had been airlifted to a hospital in Inverness where they were being treated for their injuries. 

"They ejected from their aircraft off the south coast of Stornoway and were rescued within 15 minutes," Bennett said. "It is not appropriate to comment further before their next of kin have been informed. It is too early to say what caused the incident but a full investigation will take place."


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