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Navy F/A-18 Super Hornet in flight after refueling over the Pacific Ocean near the coast of Brisbane, Australia. Senior Airman Elora Martinez

Seven hurt as US fighter jet crashes in California's Death Valley

Those injured were treated for minor cuts and burns from plane fragments after the crash.

SEVEN PEOPLE WERE injured as a US Navy fighter jet crashed in Death Valley National Park in California yesterday. 

Those hurt were treated for minor injuries such as cuts and burns after being hit by plane debris from the crash, according to park spokesman Patrick Taylor. 

Injured tourists told KABC-TV that they were taking photos of the sweeping landscape when the jet came into view before hitting the canyon wall.

The park is located 415 kilometres from Los Angeles. 

death valley cali Death Valley National Park, California. Google Maps Google Maps

The crash took place at approximately 10am PST (5pm Irish time), according to US Naval Air Forces. 

The pilot of the single-seat F/A-18 Super Hornet jet is missing. A military helicopter is conducting a search.

The pilot was on a routine training mission, according to a military spokesperson. 

Local worker Aaron Cassell reported the crash to park authorities. He worked 16 kilometres from the scene of the crash and said it sent dark smoke billowing into the air

“I just saw a black mushroom cloud go up,” Cassell told The Associated Press.

“Typically you don’t see a mushroom cloud in the desert.”

Ambulances were sent to the crash site. 

- with reporting from Associated Press. 

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