Pilot Goes Down Off Aircraft Carrier

Pilot Goes Down Off Aircraft Carrier

(NewsSpace.com) – Navy pilots undergo intense training to learn the ins and outs of the aircraft they’ll be operating. In this training, they’re also taught how to survive should something go wrong, with the hopes that they’ll never have to employ those life-saving tactics. However, things do go wrong, and one pilot lived to tell the tale.

In November 2021, a Royal Navy pilot, known only as Hux, experienced a scary event when the British fighter jet he was attempting to take off in suffered a loss of power. In an effort to save the aircraft — and himself — he tried to employ emergency power. That failed, and then so did the brakes, leaving Hux with one option as it was clear the jet was going to roll off the surface of the HMS Queen Elizabeth: ejection.

Ejection isn’t without its risks, either, especially over a large body of water such as the Mediterranean Sea. Hux was lucky in that after his parachute deployed and he descended, he narrowly made it onto the edge of the ship. Had he landed a few feet over, he could’ve possibly been sucked underneath the vessel in a tragic event. In the end, Hux simply suffered minor injuries, including a few cuts to his neck from the high-speed ejection.

Adding to the intensity of the situation, Hux’s experience with cheating death occurred while the BBC was filming “The Warship: Tour of Duty.” The crew interviewed him after, and it became part of the documentary.

Hux’s F-35 Lightning II jet was eventually recovered from where it sank a mile underwater, with the United States and Italy assisting Britain in the effort. An investigation into the accident showed that it wasn’t an equipment failure but rather a very costly crew error — they forgot to remove a rain cover which prevented airflow to the engine and hindered take-off.

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