Pilot hospitalized after military plane crashes near Albuquerque airport

A military aircraft crashed near New Mexico’s Albuquerque International Sunport on Tuesday afternoon, leaving the pilot hospitalized with injuries.

The pilot, who is in the Air Force, was injured after he ejected from the jet, the Albuquerque Journal reported.

He is expected to recover from his injuries, a Kirtland Air Force Base spokesperson told the outlet.

The pilot was taking the jet from a Lockheed Martin facility in Fort Worth, Texas, and landed at Kirtland to refuel. He took off shortly after and was heading toward the Edwards Air Force Base in Southern California, the outlet reported.

The Kirtland Air Force Base is next to the airport, which confirmed the crash with a statement on the social platform X, noting that the pilot was the only person on board.

“Flight operations have resumed, but check with your airline for flight status,” the airport wrote.

Photos and videos shared online showed fire and smoke coming from the hill the aircraft hit. Crews arrived to put out the fire and search for the pilot.

An Albuquerque Fire Rescue spokesperson said it received reports of a downed aircraft around 2 p.m. local time and that the pilot was able to eject himself before the crash happened but still sustained injuries.

Two other people were near the scene but were not hurt.

It’s the second military plane crash in the state in the past month, the Journal reported. In April, a jet went down near the Holloman Air Force Base, where the pilot similarly ejected from the aircraft.

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