updated 3/26/2004 4:32:29 PM ET 2004-03-26T21:32:29

A Navy F-18 fighter jet crashed and burned on the runway at the Raleigh-Durham airport during takeoff Friday, but the pilot ejected, authorities said.

Patty McQuillan, a spokeswoman for the state Department of Crime Control and Public Safety, said it was not immediately known if the pilot — the only person aboard — was injured.

But Andy Palahnuck, a witness, told News14 Carolina that he saw the pilot walking around after ejecting.

The plane was engulfed in flames.

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