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Tuesday, May 28, 2024

After 2 Helicopter Crashes, Army Suspends Nonessential Flights

After two fatal helicopter accidents within a month’s time, the United States Army said on Friday that it would be halting all Army flights, with the exception of those needed for essential operations, until aviation units finish the appropriate training.

According to a statement released by the Army, the training would concentrate on subjects such as reducing risk, performing maintenance, and planning flights. After the completion of the daylong training, which can start as early as Monday, the units will be able to resume flying again. The completion of the training is mandatory for active-duty forces by the 5th of May, while Army National Guard and Reserve units have until the 31st of May to do so.

After two distinct midair crashes during separate training missions, which resulted in the deaths of 12 troops, the decision was made to suspend all aircraft. The Army has issued a statement saying that both occurrences are still being investigated and that there is no evidence to suggest that there is any connection between the two accidents.

The first incident occurred on March 29 at Fort Campbell, Kentucky, and included two HH-60 Black Hawk helicopters that were assigned to the 101st Airborne Division. Both aircraft were destroyed in the collision. Four troops were killed in one of the helicopters, while five soldiers were killed in the second chopper. There was not a single survivor.

On Thursday, two AH-64 Apache helicopters that were part of the 11th Airborne Division and were deployed to Alaska also collided in the air and crashed. There were four people on the crew, however only three were murdered and one was injured.

In military aviation, a “stand-down” is often ordered after there have been two or more accidents in a relatively short period of time.

Following three separate accidents within a span of seven days that resulted in six fatalities, the United States Navy issued an order in 2022 that stopped all non-essential flights for one full day.

Jonathan James
Jonathan James
I serve as a Senior Executive Journalist of The National Era
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