California amphibious vehicle accident: USA marine dead, eight missing

California amphibious vehicle accident: USA marine dead, eight missing”

One Marine is dead, two are in the hospital and eight more service members are missing off the coast of San Clemente Island after their amphibious assault vehicle began taking on water Thursday afternoon, the Marines said in a statement early Friday. "I ask that you keep our Marines, sailors and their families in your prayers as we continue our search", Colonel Christopher Bronzi, commanding officer of the 15th Marine Expeditionary Unit, said on Twitter.

A U.S. Navy destroyer and a Coast Guard cutter searched at sea while three Navy helicopters and a Coast Guard helicopter searched overhead, in addition to several small Navy boats, the statement said.

Officials said the incident happened at around 5:45 p.m. Thursday during a routine training exercise involving the 15th Marine Expeditionary Unit, I Marine Expeditionary Force, and Makin Island Amphibious Ready Group, according to officials. Eight other people onboard the vehicle were able to make it out, said.

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.

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The name of the Marine who died will be withheld for 24 hours, pending notification of next of kin. "Search and rescue efforts are still underway with support from the Navy and Coast Guard".

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.

This is a developing story and will be updated as events warrant.

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