(WASHINGTON) — A Navy MH-53E helicopter with five crewmembers aboard crashed into the Atlantic Ocean off the coast of Virginia Beach Tuesday morning.
Four of the five crew members have been rescued and were being treated at a local hospital as the search continued for the fifth missing crew member.
Navy spokesman Commander Mike Kafka confirmed to ABC News that the MH-53E “Sea Dragon” was on a routine training mission with another MH-53 E helicopter when around 11 a.m. it “made an emergency water landing in the Atlantic Ocean about 20 miles east of the Fort Story/Virginia beach area.”
When the helicopter went down, the other MH-53E helicopter remained overhead and recovered four of the five crew members aboard the downed helicopter. Those survivors were then flown to a local area hospital.
Other Navy helicopters and Coast Guard vessels have responded to the area for a search and rescue for the missing crewmember.
Kafka, a spokesman with Naval Air Forces Atlantic, said the helicopter belonged to the MH-14 helicopter squadron based at Naval Station Norfolk Chambers Field.
MH-53E’s is a variant of the CH-53 heavy lift helicopter that is used as a minesweeper. The CH-53’s are the largest helicopters in the U.S. military’s inventory.
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