The US military reported that an F-35 aircraft is missing following a "mishap" that forced the pilot to eject yesterday (Sunday).
Joint Base Charleston wrote on Facebook that the craft is a Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II. The pilot was safely recovered and taken to the hospital.
In an unusual move, the military asked South Carolina residents to assist in locating the plane.
"Based on the jet’s last-known position and in coordination with the FAA, we are focusing our attention north of JB Charleston, around Lake Moultrie and Lake Marion," the Facebook statement reads. “The public is asked to cooperate with military and civilian authorities as the effort continues."
The F-35 is a state-of-the-art fifth-generation stealth fighter plane. Israel has purchased 35 F-35s to upgrade the Israel Air Force capabilities and maintain its qualitative military edge.
In 2018, the US temporarily grounded all F-35s after a series of malfunctions were discovered, including a faulty fuel pipe which caused one aircraft to crash in the same area as the latest incident.