Fox News reported that an Army Apache AH-64 Helicopter from Fort Carson, Colorado crashed during a routine training mission in California early Saturday morning. Both pilot and co-pilot were killed. An investigation into crash is underway.
The incident occurred at around 1:30 a.m. local time on Saturday. No details about the crash were released at this time, and the names of the soldiers killed are pending notification of next of kin.
The helicopter was in California on a regular training rotation at the National Training Center at Fort Irwin in the Mojave Desert. The specific mission for the flight was a “readiness training exercise.”
The helicopter was from the Army’s 4th Infantry Division at Fort Carson.
“It is with great sadness that we announce the death of two 4th Infantry Division Soldiers at the National Training Center today. Our heartfelt prayers and condolences go out to their families and friends during this difficult and painful time. The loss of any soldier truly saddens everyone here at the Mountain Post and it is a tremendous loss to the team.” Maj. Gen. Randy A. George, commanding general of the 4th Inf. Div. and Fort Carson in November.
In Friday’s speech to the Johns Hopkins Advanced School of International Studies, Secretary of Defense James Mattis told the students that “For too long, we have asked our military to stoically carry a ‘success at any cost’ attitude as they work tirelessly to accomplish the mission with now inadequate and misaligned resources, simply because the Congress could not maintain regular order.”
The US Military, within all of its branches, has experienced difficulties with readiness from aircraft to ships. Training hours have been cut, and aircraft are in need of proper maintenance or replacement. Pilot hours are at their lowest levels in 30 years, according to Maj Gen William Gayler. Reserve training is at a standstill while the government is shutdown, although the accident yesterdy morning was not attibuted to the shutdown.
Featured photo- the Boeing Apache AH-64 helicopter.