4 dead in Marine helicopter crash in California


A CH-53E Super Stallion heavy lift helicopter crashed Tuesday at about 2:35 p.m. local time, outside the border town of El Centro, Calif., with the crewmembers aboard, according to a statement by the 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing.

The authorities are investigating the crash case, to know the actual cause behind the crash. In addition, U.S.A officials have not confirmed whether those killed were Marines.

Four U.S. Marines from Marine Corps Air Station Miramar were killed in a helicopter crash during a training mission Tuesday afternoon in the El Centro area in Imperial County. The crew members haven't been identified. "The status of all four is presumed dead pending positive identification", the 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing said in a press release.

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Elsewhere, a Marine Corp pilot is in a stable condition after an AV-8B Harrier jet crashed in Djibouti, East Africa, on the same day as the CH-53E Super Stallion helicopter crash, the U.S. Naval Forces Central Command said in a statement. In 2005, 31 people died when a CH-53E helicopter went down in Iraq during a sandstorm.

Maj. Morgan Frazer, a spokesman for the unit, said additional details about the crash were not available Wednesday morning.

A CH-53E Super Stallion, used mainly for heavy lifting of military equipment, comes down near El Centro, close to Mexico's border. During that incident, none of the seven US military personnel were injured nor were any residents harmed, the Asahi Shimbun, one of the five national newspapers in Japan, reported.