The Navy reported that an F/A-18E Super Hornet crashed near Naval Air Weapons Station China Lake on Wednesday and a search is underway for its pilot.
The crash occurred in Death Valley National Park in an area where aviation enthusiasts frequently gather to watch training, and reports from the scene indicated seven people suffered minor injuries.
“The aircraft from VFA-151 was on a routine training flight when the mishap occurred,” the Navy said in a tweet. “The cause of the mishap is under investigation.”
The crash occurred around 10 a.m. east of the base in Inyo County.
The Navy said search and rescue units are at the scene in the remote desert region.
The aircraft and its pilot were based at NAS Lemoore near Sacramento.
The China Lake base was damaged by two large earthquakes at the beginning on July, but was back in operation less than a week later.
Updated at 5:45 a.m., Thursday, Aug. 1, 2019
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