A crash in Hawaii left one Marine dead and at least 12 hospitalised after the MV-22 Osprey aircraft they were on experienced a “hard-landing mishap.”
The identity of the dead marine and the cause of the crash remain unknown.
“It’s tragic and our condolences go out to the families and the loved ones of the victim,” said Marine Corps spokesman Capt. Alex Lim. “But right now we need to investigate further and see what happened.”
The Osprey went down at the Bellows Air Force Station in Waimanalo around 11:40 AM local time carrying 22 marines from the 15th Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU).
The US Marine Corps issued a statement saying “The marines were conducting routine sustainment training at the time. The 15th MEU departed San Diego May 10 on a seven-month deployment to the Pacific Command and Central Command areas of operation.”
The 21 marines who survived the crash were taken to local hospitals for assessment and treatment.
“I can tell you that MV-22s have been a very reliable aircraft … We’ve provided aid and assistance in the Philippines. They’re very reliable tilt rotor aircrafts,” added Lim.
A tilt rotor aircraft flies like an airplane but has the vertical lift capability of a helicopter.
The Osprey program, a joint effort by Boeing Co. and Bell, a unit of Textron Inc., was almost shelved after a host of mechanical failures and two test crashes that killed 23 Marines in 2000, the AP reports.
The recent helicopter which crashed in Nepal, resulting in eight deaths, was not an Osprey.