A Canadian jet pilot's incredible near-death escape has been captured in a series of dramatic photographs.
Captain Brian Bews is lucky to be alive after ejecting from the aircraft just moments before it crashed to the ground and burst into a ball of flames, CBC News reports.
Practising for the 2010 Alberta International Airshow, the pilot from the Royal Canadian Airforce was reportedly attempting a low-flying manoeuvre in the CF-18 jet when it stalled and started to nose-dive.
Captain Bews, who can be seen sailing metres above the stricken aircraft in a virtually opened chute, has been admitted to a hospital in Alberta, Canada, with undetermined injuries.
Photographer Ian Martens said Captain Bews looked unconscious when parachuting from the jet.
"I noticed it start to bank a little bit off to one side, which I kind of thought was unusual and I saw a couple of pops and all of a sudden this plane just banked and slowly dropped into the ground into this huge orange ball of fire," Mr Martens was quoted as saying.
The federal government has reportedly begun an investigation at the crash site.
"He is alive and we believe right now that his injuries are non-life-threatening," Canadian Forces Captain Nicole Meszaros told CBC News.
Captain Bews joined the Canadian Forces over a decade ago and has been piloting the CF-18 jet since 2004.