U.S. Warplane Slips Off Flight Deck During Landing; Both Pilots Rescued After Ejecting

A plane veered off the USS Constellation's flight deck and slipped into the water during landing Tuesday. The two pilots ejected into the water and were rescued by helicopter.

The S-3B Viking airplane, which is generally used for anti-submarine warfare, malfunctioned, military officials said in a statement. After being rescued, both pilots were able to walk off the helicopter, although one was carried away on a stretcher. Both were being evaluated for minor injuries, officials said.

Their names were not released.

In addition to anti-submarine warfare, S-3B Vikings are used for surveillance and precision targeting and for refueling other planes. The plane was part of the VS-38 squadron on USS Constellation, known as "Red Griffins."

The aircraft also is equipped for tanking, mining and limited electronic surveillance. The sound of its engines are often compared to that of a vacuum cleaner, hence its nickname, the "Hoover."