In April 2019, an F-35A variant belonging to Japan crashed about half an hour after taking off from Misawa Air Base. The JASDF concluded that the pilot experienced vertigo-or spatial disorientation during flight-which was the reason the pilot of the fifth-generation jet was unable to rectify the aircraft's course, ultimately plunging into the Pacific Ocean.
The F-35A crashed into the Pacific Ocean at more than 683 mph with no reported attempt by the pilot to avoid a collision. The crash occurred about 84 miles east of Misawa Air Base, in the northern part of Japan's main island of Honshu. There is no evidence that the pilot managed to eject from the cockpit before the aircraft hit the water.
Japan Air Self-Defense Force.
The inability of a pilot to correctly interpret aircraft attitude, altitude or airspeed in relation to the Earth or other points of reference.
Spatial disorientation is a causal factor in many fatal general aviation accidents.