On November 29, a CV-22B Osprey crash off the coast of Japan claimed the lives of eight service members during a training mission. The Air Force Special Operations Command confirmed the tragedy on Tuesday. Six of the eight crew members' remains have been located, with three recovered. The search for the remaining two, presumed not to have survived, continues.
Recovery Efforts and Condolences
The military is actively engaged in recovering the bodies and aircraft debris. Lieutenant General Tony Bauernfeind expressed deep sorrow over this loss, emphasizing that the service of these airmen will never be forgotten. In a heartfelt message, US President Joe Biden and First Lady Jill Biden extended their sympathies to the families and friends of the fallen, acknowledging the significant sacrifice made by these service members for the peace and stability of Japan and the region.
Japanese Prime Minister Fumio Kishida also conveyed his condolences to President Biden and the American people, expressing gratitude for the dedication of these service members to the peace and stability of Japan and the region.
Safety Concerns Around the Osprey
The Osprey, a US-made hybrid aircraft known for its versatility in takeoff and landing capabilities, has faced previous safety concerns due to past crashes. In response to this incident, the U.S. military has grounded all its Osprey CV-22 aircraft to mitigate risk while the investigation continues.
The cause of this recent crash is under investigation. The preliminary investigation has hinted at a potential material failure. This tragic incident has led to the grounding of nearly 500 military aircraft, affecting the Air Force, Navy, and Marine Corps. The timeline for when the fleet will be back in commission is yet to be specified.