Three U.S. Marines were killed and several others injured when an Osprey aircraft crashed during a military exercise in Australia, officials said Sunday.
Three of the 23 sailors on board the MV-22B Osprey were killed and five were transferred to the Royal Darwin Hospital in critical condition, Marine Rotational Force – Darwin said in a statement on Sunday.
The incident took place at Melville Island in Australia around 9.30 am local time.
“The Marines on board were flying in support of the Exercise Predators run. Rescue efforts are underway,” the statement said, adding, “The cause of the incident is under investigation.”
Earlier, Northern Province Chief Minister Natasha Files said some of the other marines were being treated at the scene.
“We’re working incredibly hard and fast to make sure we can get people to treatment,” Files said.
Australia’s Northern Territory Police Commissioner Michael Murphy said two US Marine Osprey aircraft took off from Darwin and flew towards the Tiwi Islands, about 80 kilometers away, on Sunday morning. A plane crashes on Melville Island.
A spokesman for the Australian Department of Defense said the incident occurred during the 2023 exercise Predator run.
Several accidents involving Osprey military aircraft have been reported over the years.
In 2022, five US Marines died when an MV-22B Osprey aircraft crashed during a training mission near Glamis, California. That same year four US service members were killed when their Osprey crashed during a NATO exercise in Norway.
Two accidents involving Osprey military aircraft occurred in 2017. On August 5, an MV-22B crashed off the coast of Australia, killing three US Marines. A Marine Corps MV-22 Osprey crashed in Syria a month later on September 28, injuring two service members.
According to a CNN report and US Department of Defense press releases, previous Osprey crashes include:
July 20, 1992: Seven people were killed during the test when the Osprey crashed in Virginia.
April 8, 2000: 19 Marines killed in training accident in Arizona The crash was attributed to pilot error, with investigators concluding that the pilot attempted to land too fast and at too steep an angle, resulting in a loss of lift.
December 11, 2000: An Osprey crashes in North Carolina, killing four Marines. After the crash, problems with the hydraulic component and a software glitch in the plane’s computer system were blamed.
April 8, 2010: A US Air Force Osprey has crashed in southern Afghanistan, killing three US service members and a civilian employee.
April 11, 2012: Osprey crash kills two US soldiers in Morocco
June 13, 2012: An Air Force CV-22 Osprey crashed during a routine training mission north of Navarre, Florida, injuring five.
May 17, 2015: A Marine Corps MV-22 Osprey crashes at Bellows Training Ground in Oahu, Hawaii, killing two Marines.
American osprey falls into ocean off Okinawa
December 13, 2016: An MV-22B Osprey lands in shallow water off Okinawa, Japan, injuring two.
August 5, 2017: MV-22B Osprey aircraft crashes off Australian coast, killing three Marines
September 28, 2017: A Marine Corps MV-22 Osprey has crashed in Syria, injuring two soldiers.
March 18, 2022: Four US service members were killed when the MV-22 Osprey they were traveling in crashed during a NATO exercise in Norway.
June 8, 2022: Five U.S. Marines died Wednesday when an MV-22 Osprey crashed during a training mission near Glamis, California.
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