Civilian jet trainer crashes in California desert; crew safe

Kelso Dunes
Posted at 1:31 PM, Mar 05, 2021
and last updated 2021-03-05 16:31:56-05

MOJAVE, Calif. (AP) — A military-style jet trainer operated by a civilian test pilot school has crashed in California’s Mojave Desert after its two-member crew ejected safely.

The National Test Pilot School at Mojave Air and Space Port says the Aermacchi MB-326 Impala went down around 10:10 a.m. Friday.

A statement from nearby Edwards Air Force Base said the crash site was in an uninhabited area of the base.

The National Test Pilot School is a nonprofit civilian institution established in 1981 to meet the flight test training needs of the U.S. and international aerospace communities.

The MB-326 is a single-engine jet designed in Italy and produced in the 1960s and ’70s.