FREDERICK, Okla. – An Air Force (search) training jet and a small plane collided Tuesday over southwestern Oklahoma, killing the plane's pilot, authorities said. Both military pilots parachuted to safety.
The T-37 training jet (search) from Sheppard Air Force Base (search) in Wichita Falls, Texas, struck the private plane over a rural area southeast of Frederick, Federal Aviation Administration spokesman John Clabes said.
The burning wreckage fell into a field. By mid-afternoon, the crash site had been cordoned off by military personnel.
The two military pilots suffered only minor injuries after parachuting to the ground. Officials at the Air Force base said a nearby land owner picked them up and helped them get medical care.
A base spokesman said he did not know what caused the collision, which happened at about 5,000 feet. The National Transportation Safety Board was to investigate.
The private plane was a crop-duster being flown from its manufacturer to its new owner in South Dakota, said a spokesman for the Texas manufacturer, Air Tractor.
The dead pilot's name was not immediately released. The Air Force pilots were identified as Capt. Christopher S. Otis and 2nd Lt. Roderick V. James. Officials did not release their ages or hometowns.
In 2002, two T-37 training jets collided about 80 miles east of Frederick while flying in close formation. No one was injured. Base officials at the time said that it was the first accident involving the training jets since 1978.
The Air Force trains American and NATO pilots on the two-seat, twin-engine T-37s at Sheppard.