A civilian pilot was injured when an A-4 Skyhawk crashed on Thursday morning while flying red air operations at Nellis AFB, Nev. The Skyhawk went down on public land near Nellis around 7:40 a.m. after an in-flight emergency, Air Combat Command announced. The pilot, who received medical treatment for minor injuries, was supporting 57th Wing operations at the time of the crash. Draken International flies A-4 Skyhawks, along with L-159 aircraft, to augment the Air Force’s F-16 aggressor fleet at Nellis. The aircraft have advanced radar, counter measures, and other equipment to replicate fourth generation jets in training exercises. Draken said last month that its A-4s flew as red air threats for F-35 training at Nellis.
U.S. Air Force F-35s and F-22s regularly deploy deep into the Pacific region from Alaska, Utah, and Hawaii. In the future, though, the head of U.S. Indo-Pacific Command would like to see the Air Force permanently station fifth-generation aircraft west of the international date line—closer to China.