Marine Dead, 8 Missing Following AAV Incident Off California

Google+ Pinterest LinkedIn Tumblr +

U.S. Marines with Bravo Company, Battalion Landing Team 1/4, 15th Marine Expeditionary Unit, operate an AAV-P7/A1 assault amphibious vehicle while embarking the amphibious landing dock USS Somerset (LPD-25) on July 27, 2020. US Marine Corps Photo

A Marine is dead and eight more are missing after an Amphibious Assault Vehicle incident off the coast of California on late Thursday.

Fifteen Marines and a sailor were aboard the AAV, assigned to the 15th Marine Expeditionary Unit, as it was operating near San Clemente Island when the incident occurred when they reported taking on water at about 5:45 p.m. local time. Eight from the AAV were recovered, according to a statement from I Martine Expeditionary Force.

The Marine was pronounced dead at the Scripps Memorial Hospital La Jolla, Calif.

“Two Marines were transported to local hospitals where one was listed in critical condition and the other in stable condition.

Guided-missile destroyer USS John Finn (DDG-113), amphibious warships USS Makin Island (LHD-8), USS Somerset (LPD-25) and USS San Diego LPD-22 and Coast Guard Cutter USCGC Forrest Rednour (WPC-1129) are searching for the missing service members. Additionally, three Navy MH-60 helicopters, a Coast Guard MH-60 Jayhawk and small boats embarked from Makin Island are part of the search.

According to I MEF, the AAV was operating with the Makin Island Amphibious Ready Group at the time of the mishap.

Makin Island left San Diego on July 25 for the training, while Somerset and San Diego left San Diego on July 27. The three ships make up the Makin Island ARG.

“We are deeply saddened by this tragic incident. I ask that you keep our Marines, sailors, and their families in your prayers as we continue our search,” said Col. Christopher Bronzi, 15th MEU Commanding Officer said in a statement.

I MEF is withholding the name of the dead Marine until 24 hours following a next of kin notification.

The incident is under investigation.

The AAV has been the primary infantry sea-to-land transport vehicle since the 1970s and the Marines are testing its replacement.

The following is the complete July 31, 2020 statement I Marine Expeditionary Force.

1 Marine dead, 8 missing after AAV mishap off California coast

MARINE CORPS BASE CAMP PENDLETON, Calif. (July 31, 2020) — One Marine with 15th Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU), I Marine Expeditionary Force, was pronounced dead at Scripps Memorial Hospital La Jolla following an amphibious assault vehicle (AAV) mishap off the coast of Southern California on July 30, 2020.

Two Marines were transported to local hospitals where one was listed in critical condition and the other in stable condition.

Fifteen Marines and one Sailor were inside the AAV at the time of the incident, eight of whom have been recovered.

The name of the deceased Marine will be withheld until 24 hours after next of kin have been notified.

“We are deeply saddened by this tragic incident. I ask that you keep our Marines, Sailors, and their families in your prayers as we continue our search,” said Col. Christopher Bronzi, 15th MEU Commanding Officer.

Search and rescue efforts are ongoing to recover the remaining eight service members. Assisting in the search efforts are the USS John Finn, three U.S. Navy MH-60 helicopters and multiple small boats from the USS Makin Island, USS Somerset, and USS San Diego, as well as the U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Forrest Rednour and a Coast Guard MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter from Coast Guard Sector San Diego. At approximately 5:45 p.m. PST, Marines in the AAV reported taking on water.

The incident occurred during a 15th MEU and Makin Island Amphibious Ready Group routine training exercise in the vicinity of San Clemente Island.

The incident is under investigation.

Source: USNI News

Share.

Leave A Reply