Marham aircraft still flying after first crash involving an F-35 in America

An F-35 Lightning at RAF Marham Picture: Ian Burt

An F-35 Lightning at RAF Marham Picture: Ian Burt - Credit: Archant

The RAF's latest stealth bomber is not being grounded - as an investigation gets under way into the first crash involving an F-35.

The jet, which was being flown by the US Marine Corps, came down near Air Station Beaufort, in South Carolina, yesterday.

Its pilot ejected to safety but the £100m aircraft was completely destroyed.

In a statement to American media, the Marine Corps said the cause of the crash was under investigation.

The RAF and Royal Navy are being equipped with the F-35 Lightning. So far 10 of the aircraft have arrived at Marham, which will be their main land base.

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A spokesman at the Ministry of Defence in London said there were no plans to ground the aircraft, which fly regular training sorties over Norfolk.

Yesterday two F-35s made the first vertical landings on board the navy's newest aircraft carrier, the HMS Queen Elizabeth, off the east coast of America.

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