F-18 fighter crashes on takeoff near Madrid

Early reports suggested the plane's engine failed

The Eurofighter crashed at around 11am local time (stock photo)

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

An F-18 Eurofighter jet has crashed on takeoff at a military base near Madrid, the Spanish defence ministry has confirmed.

Pilot Fernando Pérez Serrano, 26, died when the plane crashed at the Torrejon de Ardoz base.

The incident took place at around 11am local time (10am GMT).

Early reports suggested the likely cause of the crash as engine failure, although this has yet to be confirmed.

In the aftermath of the crash, witnesses and local media posted pictures from the scene, showing huge plumes of smoke billowing into the air.

The incident is the second Eurofighter crash in Spain in just five days.

Last Thursday a jet went down in the southern city Albacete, following a military parade. Again, the pilot died in the incident.