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Navy's Sea Harrier crashes at Goa airport
December 24, 2007 13:12 IST
Last Updated: December 24, 2007 15:48 IST
A single-seater Sea Harrier fighter aircraft of the Indian navy crashed at Dabolim airport in Panaji on Monday, but the pilot managed to bail out safely.
The aircraft, on a routine sortie, crashed at 11.15 am, an initial report said, adding that the crash had forced suspension of operations from the airport till 2 pm.
The pilot of the aircraft Commander Janak Bevli ejected safely, according to a navy spokesman. He said there has been no loss of property in the crash or any casualities on the ground.
This is the third major crash of a Sea Harrier Jump Jet which operates from carrier INS Viraat, putting a question mark on whether the navy still has enough Harriers for an operational squadron.
The navy currently is in the process of mid-life upgradation of these fighters at Bangalore-based Hindustan Aeronautics Limited. The upgradation being undertaken with the fighter manufacturers British Aerospace is aimed at giving these aircrafts an additional 10 to 15 years of life and equipping them with advanced avionics and weapons.