5 missing, 1 recovered after Navy helicopter crashes off California coast

West

SAN DIEGO (NewsNation Now) — At least five people were missing Wednesday morning after a U.S. Navy helicopter crashed in the ocean off Southern California Tuesday during a routine flight from an aircraft carrier, military officials said.

A search and rescue operation was launched after the MH-60S helicopter crashed around 4:30 p.m. PT Tuesday about 60 nautical miles off San Diego, the Navy’s U.S. Pacific Fleet said in a statement.

Officials later said that one crewmember had been rescued and “search efforts continue for five additional crewmembers.”

The crash happened while the aircraft was “conducting routine flight operations,” according to the Navy. It had been aboard the USS Abraham Lincoln.

“Search and rescue operations are ongoing with multiple Coast Guard and Navy air and surface assets,” the tweet said.

No information was provided about the status of the person rescued or where they were taken. No other details were immediately available.

The MH-60S is a versatile aircraft that typically carries a crew of about four and is used in missions including combat support, humanitarian disaster relief and search and rescue.

Retired Air Force Maj. Glenn Ignazio told NewsNation affiliate KSWB that the helicopter has an “exceptional safety record” dating back to the early 2000s.

“The Blackhawk main body that it is built off of is the same aircraft that is used throughout the Air Force, the Army and, of course, many militaries around the world,” Ignazio said. “It’s a very safe aircraft.”

NewsNation affiliate KSWB and the Associated Press contributed to this report.

This story is developing. Refresh for updates.

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