NEW: Search continues for missing pilot; one rescued pilot is in fair condition
Navy official says two F/A-18 Hornets collided in western Pacific
The cause of the crash is under investigation, Navy says
The search continues for a missing Navy pilot in the western Pacific Ocean after two U.S. fighter jets collided on Thursday while operating at sea, a Navy official told CNN on Friday.
The two F/A-18 Hornets were operating aboard the aircraft carrier USS Carl Vinson, the Navy said.
“Initial reports indicate the two jets collided,” the Navy official said.
One pilot was rescued and is in fair condition while being treated aboard the aircraft carrier. A Navy cruiser, a destroyer and helicopters have been deployed in the search for the missing pilot, the Navy said.
The cause of the crash is under investigation, the Navy said. The jets have not been recovered.
The two jets crashed about 290 miles (470 kilometers) west of Wake Island, Navy 7th Fleet spokeswoman Lt. Lauren Cole told CNN. Wake Island is more than 2,400 miles west of Hawaii.
Both jets are from Carrier Air Wing 17, the Navy said, assigned to Strike Fighter Squadron 94 and Strike Fighter Squadron 113.
CNN’s Jamie Crawford contributed to this report.