Spanish F-18 jet crashes outside Madrid | News | DW | 17.10.2017
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Spanish F-18 jet crashes outside Madrid

A pilot died when his F-18 fighter plane crashed during takeoff from the Torrejon military base outside Madrid, Spanish defense officials have said. Spain has faced two deadly fighter jet incidents in less than a week.

A Spanish F/A-18 flying above Germany's Volkel air base (picture-alliance/dpa/W. Mend)

A Spanish F/A-18 flying above Germany's Volkel air base (archive photo)

Television images showed thick smoke rising from the air base on the outskirts of Madrid after a deadly plane crash on Tuesday.

Spanish Ministry of Defense confirmed that the F-18 pilot was killed when his fighter jet crashed during takeoff maneuvers. The cause of the incident was not immediately clear. Spanish Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy expressed his condolences to the family of the 26-year-old pilot.

Also, there was no immediate information about any other casualties on site. However, the military confirmed that the deceased pilot was the only one on board the destroyed plane.

"Rescue teams are on their way," a ministry spokesman told the AFP news agency.

Last Thursday, a Eurofighter warplane also crashed after taking part in the Spanish national day parade. The 34-year-old Eurofighter pilot was killed on the landing approach of the Albacete military base, some 300 kilometers (186 miles) southeast of Madrid.

Previously, Eurofighter jets crashed in Spain in 2010 and 2014, killing the pilots both times.

dj/msh (Reuters, EFE, dpa, AFPE)