A Brazilian air force cadet died when he was ejected from a training plane for unknown reasons when the aircraft was still on the ground, authorities said Monday.
The accident occurred at 7:05 a.m. (1005 GMT) near the head of the runway at the Air Force Academy in the city of Pirassununga, in Sao Paulo state, at the beginning of a training mission, according to a communique from the air force command.
Cadet Andre Rodrigues Silva, 22 years of age and with 100 hours of flight time, was preparing to carry out a training mission in the Tucano T-27 turboprop aircraft, a light fighter made by Brazil's Embraer aircraft manufacturer.
"The Aeronautical command has already begun investigating to establish the possible factors that contributed to the accident," the communique said.
"It was an ejection on the ground. We still don't know if it was the cadet who activated the ejector or not," said Lt. Waldinei Carlos da Cruz Barbosa, an air force officer, in remarks to journalists.
According to Cruz Barbosa, the cadet, who had been at the academy since 2009 and was in his last year of training, was alive when he arrived at an air force hospital but later died due to the severity of his injuries. EFE