Home » Aviation » UPDATED: 5 Sailors Missing After Navy Helicopter Crashes off California; 5 More Sailors on USS Abraham Lincoln Injured


UPDATED: 5 Sailors Missing After Navy Helicopter Crashes off California; 5 More Sailors on USS Abraham Lincoln Injured

An MH-60S Knighthawk, assigned to the ‘Eightballers’ of Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron (HSC) 8, lifts cargo from the flight deck of the aircraft carrier USS Theodore Roosevelt (CVN-71), May 21, 2021. US Navy Photo

This post will be updated as new information becomes available.

Five sailors are missing after a Navy helicopter crashed off the coast of California on Monday, U.S. 3rd Fleet said.

One sailor from MH-60S operating from aircraft carrier USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN-72) was rescued and Navy and Coast Guard assets are searching for the missing sailors.

The helicopter “crashed into the sea while conducting routine flight operations approximately 60 nautical miles off the coast of San Diego at 4:30 p.m. PST, Aug. 31,” reads a statement from U.S. 3rd Fleet.
“Search and rescue operations are ongoing with multiple Coast Guard and Navy air and surface assets.”

Elements of Coast Guard District 11, Littoral Combat Ship USS Cincinnati (LCS-20) and carrier Lincoln were included in the search effort.

In an updated statement, 3rd Fleet said the helicopter was operating on the deck of the aircraft carrier before it went over the edge into the ocean.

The helicopter was assigned to the “Eightballers” of Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron (HSC) 8, according to a social media post from the squadron.

“All affected family members have been notified,” reads the post.

Other sailors were injured as a result of the crash.

“Five additional sailors aboard Abraham Lincoln suffered injuries in the incident and are in stable condition. Two of the five Abraham Lincoln sailors were transported ashore for treatment, while three of the five Abraham Lincoln sailors had minimal injuries and remain aboard the ship,” according to a Wednesday afternoon update on the search.
“An investigation into the cause of the incident is underway.”

Abraham Lincoln completed a record-breaking deployment last year and has started the basic phase of the deployment cycle after completing a six-month repair period in April.

The following is the complete statement from U.S. 3rd Fleet.

SAN DIEGO—One crewmember has been rescued and search efforts continue for five additional crewmembers of an MH-60S helicopter embarked aboard USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN 72) that crashed into the sea while conducting routine flight operations approximately 60 nautical miles off the coast of San Diego at 4:30 p.m. PST, Aug. 31.

Search and rescue operations are ongoing with multiple Coast Guard and Navy air and surface assets.

Abraham Lincoln is homeported in San Diego.

UPDATE 0936 1SEP2021:

The Sailor who was rescued from the aircraft was transported ashore and is in stable condition.

The aircraft, from Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron (HSC) 8, was operating on deck before crashing into the sea.

Five additional Sailors aboard Abraham Lincoln suffered injuries in the incident and are in stable condition. Two of the five Abraham Lincoln Sailors were transported ashore for treatment, while three of the five Abraham Lincoln Sailors had minimal injuries and remain aboard the ship.

An investigation into the cause of the incident is underway.