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Chinese fighter jet crashes, killing one person on the ground and injuring two

Chinese fighter jet crashes into homes, killing one and injuring two ‘accident during training’ – pilot jumps to safety

  • Chengdu J-7 jet crashed into Xiangyang city, Hubei province on Thursday,
  • Pilot rescued but jet fell on houses below and caught fire
  • One person on the ground was killed and two more were injured
  • Crash happened shortly after Soviet-era jet took off on a training mission

One person has been killed and two more injured after a Chinese fighter jet crashed into homes on Thursday shortly after taking off on a training mission.

The jet, a Chengdu J-7 based on a 1960s Soviet design, crashed into a residential area of ​​Xiangyang city, close to a military airport.

The pilot, who was on a training mission, managed to parachute to safety when his plane struck houses and caught fire, killing one person.

Two other people were injured and were taken to hospital in addition to the pilot, who was also injured. Reports in the Chinese state media did not clarify their condition.

Video of the scene showed flames burning at a city intersection as stunned onlookers gathered.

One person on the ground has been killed and two more seriously injured after a Chinese jet on a training mission crashed in the city of Xiangyangon on Thursday

One person on the ground has been killed and two more seriously injured after a Chinese jet on a training mission crashed in the city of Xiangyangon on Thursday

The jet - a Chengdu J-7 - had just taken off from a nearby airbase when the pilot was forced to jump from the sky when it fell from the sky on a residential area

The jet – a Chengdu J-7 – had just taken off from a nearby airbase when the pilot was forced to jump from the sky when it fell from the sky on a residential area

State media gave no cause for the crash, which is under investigation.

Such reports from China are uncommon, with Beijing generally keen to cover up military mishaps or to praise the pilot’s “heroic” role in avoiding deaths.

The J-7 is an older model, single-engine aircraft with its origins in the Soviet MiG-21 of the 1950s and was produced for nearly 50 years until 2013.

However, large numbers remain in service to provide regional air defense. China also sold an export version, the F-7, to more than a dozen countries, many of which have since retired.

China’s civil aviation industry has come under scrutiny in recent months after the still unexplained crash of a China Eastern Airlines passenger plane on March 21 that killed all 132 people on board.

And on May 12, a Tibet Airlines flight with 122 people on board left the southwestern city of Chongqing when it veered off the runway and caught fire. No one was killed, but several passengers were injured.

The J-7 is a Chinese jet based on a Soviet design from the 1960s that was manufactured until 2013, but is still in service with some Chinese air defense units

The J-7 is a Chinese jet based on a Soviet design from the 1960s that was manufactured until 2013, but is still in service with some Chinese air defense units

Passersby look at the smoke

Passers-by look at the smoke

Chinese state media reports of the crash are unusual, as Beijing has typically been keen to cover up military accidents and play the pilot’s ‘heroic’ role in avoiding civilian deaths

Australia and Canada have recently expressed concerns about reckless flying by Chinese fighter pilots.

In a statement on June 1, the Canadian military said Chinese planes were trying to divert a Canadian long-range patrol plane from its path and that the crew had to change direction quickly to avoid a collision.

Australia said a Chinese fighter jet committed a dangerous act of aggression against an Australian Air Force plane conducting air surveillance in the South China Sea on May 26.

The Chinese J-16 accelerated and cut in front of the Australian plane, releasing the chaff containing tiny bits of aluminum designed to confuse radars being sucked into the latter’s engine, Australian Defense Secretary Richard Marles said.

China has defended the actions of its pilots and blamed foreign countries for closely guarding its territory to curb Chinese development.

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