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ARLINGTON, Va. — Three Navy pilots are safe following a midair collision Monday in the Persian Gulf, said Vice Adm. Kevin J. Cosgriff, commander of 5th Fleet.

The two planes, an F-18F and an F-18E, were from the USS Harry S. Truman, based out of Norfolk, Va., a Defense official said.

The incident happened in the evening local time, the official said. About an hour later, two of the pilots were back on the Truman and the third was en route to the ship.

The official did not have any information about the circumstances of the incident, deferring such questions to 5th Fleet.

A 5th Fleet spokesman said a news release on the matter had been e-mailed to reporters, but Stars and Stripes did not receive it by deadline on Monday.

F-18E and F-18F aircraft typically cost about $57 million per plane, according to the Navy.

More than 7,300 sailors left their homeports Nov. 5 as part of the Harry S. Truman Carrier Strike Group, deploying to the Central Command area of operations as part of the ongoing rotation to support maritime security operations in the region.

Stars and Stripes reporter Leo Shane III contributed to this report.


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