First, watch the video on Defense Tech.
I'm not going to address the reliability issue of the F/A-18s. That's outside my wheelhouse.
Note that the fire crews don't approach the burning jet from the rear. That's probably because there must have been at least 30 knots of relative wind over the flight deck, which might have increased if the Captain or OOD ordered up more speed to keep the flames blowing away from the flight crew. Spraying foam onto a fire is rather difficult if the wind is blowing in one's face.
You can also see that burning JP-5 dripped down into the catapult shuttle track.
The fire never reached the forward end of the jet, so the crew stayed with it. A flight-deck ejection might throw the crew over the side, which has its own risks.
Good work by the flight deck fire crews. That's what they practice for and it paid off.
It Was Fun While It Lasted...
1 hour ago