At Least 4 Dead After US Military Aircraft Crashes in California

At Least 4 Dead After US Military Aircraft Crashes in California
An MV-22B Osprey fly's over Anaheim, Calif., on March 24, 2021. (John Fredricks/The Epoch Times)
Mimi Nguyen Ly

At least four people are dead after a U.S. Marine Corps aircraft crashed in Southern California on Wednesday.

The aircraft, an MV-22B Osprey belonging to 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing, crashed near Glamis in Imperial County, southeast California, according to Maj. Mason Englehart, spokesman for the 3rd Marine Aircraft Wing, which has units based in Miramar, Yuma, Pendleton, and Twentynine Palms.

He said the aircraft went down at 12:25 p.m. during a training exercise.

He could not confirm the number of people on board or whether there were any deaths, and said information was still being gathered.

The tiltrotor aircraft can take off and land as a helicopter but transit as a turboprop aircraft.

Malik Earnest, reporter for Fox 5 San Diego, said that according to radio chatter, at least four people are dead and rescue teams are searching for a fifth person who remains unaccounted for.

“Imperial County officials are assuming all five people aboard a crashed military aircraft near Highway 78 are deceased,” Earnest said in a Twitter post.

Earnest said that preliminary reports had noted the aircraft was “loaded with nuclear material.”

The Naval Air Facility El Centro, located around 30 miles from the site, said in a statement that, “Contrary to initial reports, there was no nuclear material on board the aircraft.”

“More information will be made available as we receive it.”

It confirmed the crash and said that military and civilian first responders are on site.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.