Two U.S. service members on board the MV-22B Osprey were injured and required medical attention
According to U.S. Central Command press release two U.S. service members were injured and after having been evaluated for non-life threatening injuries were quickly transported to a medical treatment facility, where they were seen and released.
Since the Osprey catched fire on the ground after having performed a hard landing the aircraft is a “total loss” a U.S. defense official told The Washington Post.
Officials have not said what caused the crash, only that it’s possible the fire was somehow related.
Army Col. Ryan Dillon, a spokesman for the U.S.-led coalition there, said Friday it was not clear if the Osprey was arriving or leaving the modestly sized base when the incident occurred.
A Marine Corps official, speaking on the condition of anonymity, confirmed the aircraft belonged to that service.
The other passengers and crew on the aircraft were uninjured, and no other casualties were reported on the ground.
The cause of the incident is being investigated by the Coalition.
The official number of U.S. military personnel in Syria is capped at 503, but the Pentagon makes liberal use of temporary deployments to augment the forces who are there. Reports have indicated well over a thousand troops are there.
Earlier this year, Marines established an outpost in Syria to pound Islamic State forces in the operation to retake their stronghold in the northern city of Raqqa. U.S.-backed Kurdish and Arab fighters with the Syrian Democratic Forces secured Raqqa’s Old City on Sep. 4, with intense fighting still expected to topple the Islamic State’s de facto capital.
The V-22 is a joint service, multi-mission aircraft with vertical take-off and landing (VTOL) capability. It performs VTOL missions as effectively as a conventional helicopter while also having the long-range cruise abilities of a twin turboprop aircraft.
The Marine Corps version, the MV-22B, is an assault transport for troops, equipment and supplies, and will be capable of operating from ships or from expeditionary airfields ashore. CV-22B is the U.S. Air Force Special Operations Command (AFSOC) variant of the USMC MV-22B Osprey.
Photo credit: Chief Petty Officer Joe Kane / U.S. Navy and Sergeant Major Michael Cato / U.S. Marine Corps