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US Republican member seeks records of F/A-18D Hornet fighter jets

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A file photo of F/A-18D Hornet fighter jet

WASHINGTON (BNS): Republican leader Duncan Hunter, member of the House Armed Services Committee, has asked the Marine Corps to release the maintenance records of all fighter jets of the type that crashed into a Californian neighbourhood, killing four members of a Korean family.


An F/A-18D Hornet fighter crashed at San Diego due to power failure as it approached the Marine Corps Air Station Miramar on Monday afternoon. However, Marine Cpl Travis Easter said officials at Miramar had no immediate response to the request for maintenance records.


In a statement released to the media, Hunter said that it was important to completely understand what went wrong.


Meanwhile, a spokesperson of Hunter, Joe Kapser was quoted in the media as saying that the fighter jet crashed because the engines failed after the aircraft began losing thrust.


It may be recalled that some time back, some cracks were discovered in the hinges on the wings of more than a dozen of the $57 million aircraft. In November, the Navy had announced that it was grounding 10 of the planes and limiting the flights of 20 others because of the cracks.


It was not immediately clear whether the plane that crashed in San Diego was under any flight restrictions. The pilot ejected safely and was taken to a naval hospital in a stable condition. According to media reports, he was discovered hanging by his parachute from a tree in a canyon in the neighbourhood.


Miramar officials declined to say whether the pilot was hospitalised, but eyewitnesses said that he escaped unhurt.


The Marine Corps fighter plane was returning from an offshore training mission when it clipped a tree and slammed into homes about three kilometers from Miramar. Two homes were incinerated, and three others were damaged. Three generations of a Korean family died in one home.

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