A Sikorsky MH-60S Seahawk helicopter crashed near Naval Air Field El Centro, California at around 6 p.m. on Thursday, June 9th, 2022. The Navy says that the helicopter, part of Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron 3 (HSC-3) based out of Naval Air Station North Island in San Diego, had four crew onboard. Thankfully, all four have been recovered alive. A Navy statement notes that "one of the aircrew has suffered non-life-threatening injuries and has been transported to a local hospital."
The crash comes just a day after the tragic loss of an MV-22 Osprey that also went down very near NAF El Centro, killing all five crew onboard. The area, which sits between MCAS Yuma in Arizona and many installations in San Diego, is a major training area for Navy and Marine aircraft.
Five days ago, a Navy F/A-18E Super Hornet also crashed near Naval Air Weapons Station China Lake in south-central California. That crash was also fatal, with Lt. Richard Bullock of Strike Fighter Squadron 113 (VFA-113) dying in the incident.
A spate of F-16 landing mishaps, three in total in just one month, has also impacted the Air Force.
Earlier today, prior to the latest crash, Congress was looking to press the Pentagon into looking deeper into military aircraft crashes as part of a markup of the 2023 National Defense Authorization Act.
We will continue to update this story as more information comes available.
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