Navy, Marine Corps working to clean up wreckage from F-35 crash

F-35 Lightning II Take To The Skies

Photo: Matt Cardy / Getty Images News / Getty Images

WILLIAMSBURG COUNTY, S.C. (WCSC) - Crews from the U.S. Navy and the Marine Corps are working together to clean up what is left from the F-35 crash earlier this month.

A Marine Corps F-35B Lightning II crashed in rural Williamsburg County on Sept. 17 after its pilot, whose name has not been released, safely ejected over a North Charleston neighborhood.

After a search of more than 24 hours, crews found a debris field near Old Georgetown Road.

The U.S. Navy Region Southeast On-Scene Coordinator team, in coordination with the Marine Corps Air Station Beaufort and 2nd Marine Aircraft Wing, is leading the recovery efforts and environmental cleanup, according to a news release from the Navy Region Southeast Public Affairs.

Members of the Navy Region Southeast On-Scene Coordinator program, based in Jacksonville, Florida, arrived on scene on Sept. 19 to begin removing the wreckage.

“We will remove damaged timber and crops as necessary at the crash site and sample soil to determine the boundaries of the area that will need to be restored,” Navy On-Scene Coordinator Sarah Murtagh said in the release. “Our goal is to return the property as close to its original condition as we can.”

Representatives have been meeting with nearby home and property owners to discuss the restoration process.

The reasoning behind the crash is still under investigation, and officials say results from an official review board could take months.

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