Thursday, 06 August, 2020


Marine sea tank sinks with 16 aboard; 1 dead and 8 missing

The entrance to Marine Corps base Camp Pendleton in Oceanside California At Least 1 US Marine Dead 8 Missing After'Mishap Off California Coast
Melba Vasquez | 01 August, 2020, 05:15

One Marine was killed and eight service members are missing when the amphibious assault vehicle (AAV) they were on sank in the waters off the California coast during a training exercise late Thursday afternoon, according to the Marine Corps.

Search-and-rescue efforts were continuing Friday morning with support from the Navy and U.S. Coast Guard, according to the Marines.

The incident occurred during a 15th Marine Expeditionary Unit and Makin Island Amphibious Ready Group routine training exercise in the vicinity of San Clemente Island, according to the Marines.

"We are deeply saddened by this tragic incident", said Col. Christopher Bronzi, 15th MEU Commanding Officer.

CNN reports that all of the service members involved in the incident are assigned to the 15th MEU based out of Camp Pendleton in California.

Five other service members were rescued.

The Corps said that of the injured pair, one was in critical condition and one was in stable condition.

One was taken to Scripps Memorial Hospital in La Jolla, where the marine died, 7 San Diego said on its website.

Officials at Camp Pendleton in southern California said that one of eight Marines rescued in the mishap off the shore of San Clemente Island was declared dead after being taken to hospital and two more remained in intensive care.

The one Marine who is reported dead in the accident has not yet been identified, as Pentagon rules specify a 24-hour notification period for the next of kin. The small armored craft are launched from U.S. Navy amphibious ships and convert into armored personnel carriers after arriving on land.

Gen. David Berger, commandant of the Marine Corps, announced during the news briefing that he had directed the immediate suspension of water operations for all assault amphibious vehicles as a precaution until they determine what caused Thursday's accident. Sixteen people were inside the vehicle at the time of the accident. Osterman said the Marines have more than 800 assault amphibious vehicles.

"San Clemente is a very challenging amphibious training ground", said Eric Oehlerich, an ABC News contributor and former Navy SEAL who has conducted training on the island.

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