Seven Marines, one Navy sailor missing after mishap off California coast

There were 15 Marines and one sailor in the AAV when it took on water

Medics took three of them to Scripps Memorial Hospital La Jolla, where one was pronounced dead and the others were admitted in critical but stable condition.

According to Osterman, the service members aboard the AAV were on their way back to a ship after completing a day of training on the island.

"The assumption is it went all the way to the bottom", he said. The Navy-owned island is about 70 miles (112 kilometers) offshore from San Diego.

A routine training exercise turned deadly for a Marine Expeditionary Force (MEF) unit on Thursday afternoon.

The vehicle is created to hold up to 24 people with 280 pounds of equipment each, Lt. Gen. Osterman said.

One US marine has died and eight others are missing after an amphibious assault vehicle (AAV) accident off the coast of southern California.

The US Navy, Marines and Coast Guards were joined by submarine support ship HOS "Dominator" to help with search efforts this weekend.

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The Marines use the amphibious assaults vehicles to transport troops and their equipment from Navy ships to land.

A Tweet from the First MEF reads "We are deeply saddened by this tragic incident".

At the time of the accident, the Marines had been training on San Clemente Island and were returning to the amphibious warship USS Somerset.

All of the service members in the incident are assigned to the 15th MEU based out of Camp Pendleton. They were also wearing flotation vests, according to Osterman, and some of the Marines were rescued because they were floating.

The most common AAV used by the Marine Corps is the AAV-P7/A1. Search and rescue operations continued into Friday evening. Three Navy MH-60 helicopters are involved, as well as a Coast Guard helicopter and cutter. We are still looking for the seven Marines and one sailor who we have not yet found'.

The 26-ton amphibious vehicle went down more than 1,000 yards from a beach on the northwest side of the island in water several hundred feet deep, Lt. Gen. Joseph Osterman, commanding general of I Marine Expeditionary Force said. Its Ground Combat Element has about 1,200 and includes a battalion landing team that consists of light armored reconnaissance vehicles, artillery and assault amphibian vehicles, according to the 15th MEU official website.

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