A Marine Corps attack jet experiencing engine trouble today jettisoned half a dozen 500-pound bombs and two fuel tanks over the Marine Corps Air Station at El Toro in Orange County before landing safely, a military official said.
The six Mark-82 high-explosive 500-pound bombs were safely defused on the ground, Gunnery Sgt. Kathy Cabot said. Six Mark-76 dummy practice bombs were also jettisoned.
One of the fuel tanks burst into flames on impact, but the fire was quickly extinguished by a Marine crash crew. The other fuel tank was recovered without incident, Cabot said.
Neither of the plane's two crew members was injured.
Cabot said the Grumman A-6E jet was taking off on a routine training flight at about 7:15 a.m. when it developed engine trouble.