Update on USMC Osprey crash

The United States Marine Corps has confirmed that at around 3am Australian Eastern Standard Time today, the search and rescue operations for three missing Marines involved in yesterday’s MV-22 Osprey incident off the east coast of Australia was suspended.

CAPTIONUS Marine Corps photo of search activities on 5 August 2017.

Focus of operations has now shifted to recovery – a transition that comes with the acknowledgement that three Marines are still unaccounted for.

Australian is supporting the US with the deployment of ADF assets to the area to assist.

US Marine Corps experts estimate the recovery and salvage operations could take several months to complete.

Australia’s Minister for Defence Marine Payne said our thoughts are with all those affected by this tragic event and the Australian government stood ready to support the US further in any way it could.

A number of Australian Defence Force assets are involved in the US-led recovery operation.

HMAS Melville, a Royal Australian Navy survey ship is currently enroute to the search area from the ship’s home port at Cairns.

A Navy Clearance Diving team is preparing to move via a Royal Australian Air Force C130J Hercules aircraft to the Shoalwater Bay Training Area to assist in the recovery mission.

Australian Army aviation assets are on short-notice readiness to support.

“These recovery operations are complex in nature and are affected by a range of factors including weather conditions, water depth, debris and water current,” Minister Payne said.

“The US military is working with the ADF and other Australian agencies to conduct thorough assessments and planning prior to the formal commencement of any salvage or recovery.

“This incident is currently being investigated by US authorities and Australia will also assist in these investigations where appropriate.”

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Brian Hartigan

Managing Editor Contact Publishing Pty Ltd PO Box 3091 Minnamurra NSW 2533 AUSTRALIA

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