Marine Dead, 8 Missing After Accident in California

Ruben Fields
August 1, 2020

At least one US Marine is dead and eight others are missing after a training accident involving an amphibious vehicle off the coast of Southern California.

The eight members remained missing as of Friday morning and were being searched for by the Navy's USS John Finn, three Navy helicopters, several smaller Navy vessels and a U.S. Coast Guard ship and helicopter, Marine officials said.

The Marine Corps, Navy and Coast Guard assets are now searching for eight missing Marines assigned to the San Diego-based 15th Marine Expeditionary Unit involved in the deadly accident.

The Coast Guard cutter, four warships and four helicopters continued their search for more than 10 hours, but so far the Marines have not been found.

All the Marines involved were assigned to the 15th Marine Expeditionary Unit, which is based out of Camp Pendleton.

Marines in the vehicle reported taking on water during an exercise on Thursday evening, 7 San Diego television reported, without citing sources.

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The Navy and the Coast Guard are leading the search for the missing Marines, the service said.

Two Marines who were involved in the accident are reported to be in critical and stable conditions as a rescue operation is underway.

'We are deeply saddened by this tragic incident.

One Marine was taken to Scripps Memorial Hospital La Jolla and later died.

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.

An amphibious assault vehicle nears shore on Santa Rosa Sound, Friday, Dec. 12, 2003, during a Marine Corps exercie at Eglin Air Force Base, Fla. According to images posted online by 15th MEU, Marines from Battalion Landing Team 1/4 embarked onto the ships Saturday to conduct "training to increase Navy-Marine Corps interoperability in the eastern Pacific". The Navy-owned island is about 70 miles (112 kilometers) offshore from San Diego.

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