Two Air Force pilots were killed Friday night after a fighter jet crash near Montgomery Regional Airport in Alabama.
The military jet was headed from Mississippi’s Columbus Air Force Base to Tallahassee, Florida, when it crashed in a wooded area near the airport in Montgomery, airport Executive Director Marshall Taggart told news outlets. The airport received alerts of the crash around 5:05 p.m., Taggart said.
The two pilots were flying a training mission on a T-38 trainer aircraft assigned to the 14th Flying Training Wing at Columbus Air Force Base. Their names are withheld until their families are notified.
“As you may have already seen, one of our T-38’s went down near Dannelly Field in Montgomery Alabama,” Col. Seth Graham, 14th Flying Training Wing commander said in a statement.
“It is with a heavy heart that I tell you both of our teammates from the 50th Flying Training Squadron were killed in the accident. Please keep the families of these airmen in your thoughts and prayers. Losing teammates is unbelievably painful but we will get through this together.”
The Columbus Air Force Base is home of the 14th Flying Training Wing of Air Education and Training Command’s 19th Air Force. The wing’s mission is specialized undergraduate pilot training.
Officials at the base are expected to hold a press conference on the accident at noon on Saturday, according to the Montgomery Advertiser.
A safety investigation board will investigate the crash, reported WSFA. Meanwhile, the Montgomery County Emergency Management Agency is asking the public to stay away from the area, the outlet reported.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.