Military officials have cordoned off the crash site and have released no further information about what happened.
Col. Kevin Kennedy, commander of the 28th Bomb Wing, said ejecting from an aircraft is “a fairly rough experience” and subjects the crew to an “instantaneous load of G-forces.”
The crew did not have time to contact Ellsworth before the crash, Kennedy said.
Area ranchers estimated that more than 50 Air Force officials were on the scene Tuesday, accompanied by a bevy of pickup trucks, diesel tankers, trailers and at least one ambulance. In the driveway of one rancher’s property, the Air Force had erected five tents and a security checkpoint.
The Federal Aviation Administration has restricted flights within a 10-mile radius of the crash site to military aircraft only. The air space above the crash zone is closed indefinitely, according to the Federal Aviation Administration.
Nishizuka’s brother, Capt. Reid Nishizuka, died in April when he was piloting an MC-12 aircraft that crashed near Kandahar Airfield in Afghanistan.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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