USS Carl Vinson Operations Ongoing Amidst V-22 Groundings, Navy Says

December 7, 2023 5:23 PM
An MV-22B Osprey, assigned to the “Dragons” of Marine Medium Tiltrotor Squadron (VRM) 265, attached to the 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit, prepares to land on the flight deck of Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Carl Vinson (CVN-70). US Navy Photo

This post has been updated to correct the name of USS Carl Vinson’s spokesperson.

The Carl Vinson Carrier Strike Group schedule should not be affected by the Pentagon’s grounding of the V-22 Ospreys following a fatal Air Force crash off the coast of Japan, USNI News understands.

USS Carl Vinson (CVN-70) and the other ships of the carrier strike group are deployed to U.S. 7th Fleet. Although Carl Vinson has CMV-22B Ospreys serve as the ship’s carrier’s primary logistics aircraft, the ship’s operational schedule should not be changed due to the standdown, Lt. Cmdr. Devin Arneson told USNI News in a Thursday statement.

“Carl Vinson Carrier Strike Group operational schedule remains unchanged demonstrating the resilience, adaptability and endurance of the Carrier Strike Group. Within the strike group and the U.S. Navy, we operate with multiple logistic redundancies across all operational envelopes, making us adaptable and steadfast. We extend our deepest sympathies to the families of our fallen Airmen,” Arneson said in a statement.

In the last week, Vinson has operated near Okinawa and Japan, according to the most recent edition of the USNI News Fleet and Marine Tracker. The Navy operates a detachment of the older C-2A Greyhound carrier on-board delivery logistics aircraft at Marine Corps Air Station Iwakuni, Japan, that could support Vinson if needed, USNI News understands.

Likewise, the Marine MV-22Bs aboard the Bataan Amphibious Ready Group are also grounded.

“Out of an abundance of caution—in coordination with the Department’s V-22 Joint Program Office—the Marine Corps is complying with NAVAIR’s directive instituting the grounding of all V-22 Osprey variants. At this time, no Marine Corps MV-22s are conducting operation,” reads a statement from the service to USNI News.

The Navy, as well as the Air Force and Marine Corps in connection wih the joint V-22 program office, grounded all V-22 Ospreys Wednesday, a week after a fatal crash killed eight airmen off the coast of Japan. Deputy Pentagon Press Secretary Sabrina Singh referred reporters to the individual services for most questions about the groundings, including why it took a week for the different military branches to call a stand-down. A Wednesday statement said the aircraft were at risk of a “possible materiel failure,” but Navy officials did not have additional details as of Thursday.

The Air Force, which changed its mission from search and rescue to search and recovery on Tuesday, has recovered six of the eight airmen.

This is not the first grounding of military aircraft, including the V-22 Ospreys, Singh said Thursday, and the secretary of defense supports the decision. She referred questions about the duration and reasoning behind the groundings to the individual services.

The Navy and Marines also grounded some of its V-22 Osprey fleets in February due to an issue with the hard clutch, USNI News previously reported. The sea service did not ground its V-22 Ospreys following an August crash in Australia, which killed three Marines.

Heather Mongilio

Heather Mongilio

Heather Mongilio is a reporter with USNI News. She has a master’s degree in science journalism and has covered local courts, crime, health, military affairs and the Naval Academy.
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