Crew Survives Navy MH-60S Crash in California

The accident Thursday marked the third military training mishap in the state in a week.

An MH-60S Sea Hawk helicopter, from the “EightBallers” of Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron (HSC) 8. [U.S. Navy Photo by Mass Communication Specialist Seaman Ian Kinkead]

A U.S. Navy MH-60S Seahawk helicopter crashed in Southern California Thursday evening, marking the third military aviation training accident in the state in less than a week.

The June 9 incident occurred around 6 p.m. near El Centro, California, according to a statement released by Naval Air Force, U.S. Pacific Fleet. The location of the crash site is about 40 miles from Glamis, California the location of where a U.S. Marine Corps MV-22B crashed Wednesday, killing all five crew members onboard.

"All four of the air crew on board survived the crash and have been safely recovered."

U.S. Navy statement

The Seahawk was assigned to Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron (HSC) 3, based at Naval Air Station North Island, California. The crew was conducting a routine training flight, which had originated from Naval Air Facility El Centro.

"All four of the air crew on board survived the crash and have been safely recovered," the Navy said. "One of the aircrew has suffered non-life threatening injuries and has been transported to a local hospital."

The accident is the latest in a string of military aviation crashes since March, and could provoke congressional action, Defense One reported. Wednesday, the House Committee on Armed Services Subcommittee on Readiness proposed an annual reporting requirement for the Joint Safety Council and new processes to implement accident investigation recommendations as part of oversight meant to address preventable training accidents.

Wednesday, a MV-22B Osprey, which was also on a training mission, went down near Glamis around 12:25 p.m., killing all five on board. Glamis and El Centro are both located in Imperial County.

The tiltrotor aircraft was assigned to Marine Aircraft Group 39, 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing, which is based in Camp Pendleton, California, a U.S. Marine Corps spokesperson told FLYING.

On June 3, Navy F/A-18E Super Hornet pilot Lt. Richard Bullock was killed during a training accident near Trona, California

"Bullock was assigned to Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 113 based at Naval Air Station Lemoore, California, and was flying a routine training mission at the time before his aircraft went down in a remote, unpopulated area. No civilians were harmed as a result of this incident," the Navy said.

In March, a U.S. Marine Corps MV-22B participating in a NATO cold weather training exercise in Norway crashed, killing four service members on board. All four Marines killed were assigned to Marine Medium Tiltrotor Squadron 261 based in New River, North Carolina.

Kimberly is managing editor of FLYING Digital.

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