The US military announced on Sunday the end of search operations for eight US soldiers, considered dead. The men had disappeared at sea in a shipwreck Thursday off the coast of California.
“It was with a heavy heart that I decided to end the search and rescue operations,” Colonel Christopher Bronzi, commander of the 15th Marine Expeditionary Unit, said in a statement, posted on Twitter.
The service members, seven members of the Marine Corps and a US Navy sailor, were aboard an amphibious assault vehicle, AAV said, which sank during a routine exercise near San Clemente Island. , about a hundred kilometers off the coast of San Diego, in the south of California.
In total, sixteen soldiers were in the vehicle. Eight had been rescued. One of them died later, and two are in critical condition.
40 hours of research
The Marine Corps, US Navy and US Coast Guard traveled over 2,500 square kilometers using helicopters and ships to find the others, but gave up after 40 unsuccessful hours.
An investigation is underway to determine the cause of the accident and while waiting to learn more, all operations aboard the AAVs have been suspended, General David Berger, commander of the Marine Corps, said on Thursday.