Navy Investigating After Landing Craft Air Cushion Collision Injures 30

The U.S. Navy has launched an investigation into the cause of a collision between two Landing Craft Air Cushions (LCACs) during a training exercise off the coast of Jacksonville, Florida, on Wednesday. The incident, which occurred while the Wasp Amphibious Ready Group and the 24th Marine Expeditionary Unit were conducting a routine exercise, resulted in injuries to 30 sailors and Marines.

According to Cmdr. Lara Bollinger, a Navy public information officer, both LCACs involved in the collision remained afloat and have since returned to their respective ships, the USS Wasp and USS New York.

A third LCAC was deployed to provide immediate assistance to the scene immediately after the collision and was responsible for transporting the injured military members to the USS Wasp and USS New York for evaluation and treatment.

Five of the injured sailors were ultimately airlifted to Savannah Memorial University Medical Center in Southern Georgia for advanced medical care. While four of them have been treated and released, one sailor remains under medical care at the hospital. The sailor was transported to the Naval Medical Center Portsmouth (NMCP), the closest military treatment facility to the sailor’s home station in Norfolk, Virginia, which will allow them to receive care and recovery near their family.

The remaining injured personnel received medical attention aboard their ships, with most injuries considered minor and those sailors and Marines returning to full duty.

“Our primary focus is on our Sailor’s health and well-being,” Bollinger stated, emphasizing the Navy’s commitment to the safety and well-being of its personnel.

The Navy is currently investigating the cause of the collision and the U.S. Second Fleet plans to provide more information as it becomes available.

LCACs are high-speed, over-the-beach, amphibious landing hovercraft capable of carrying payloads of up to 75 tons, including heavy equipment such as M-1 tanks, to more than 70 percent of the world’s coastline. The Wasp Amphibious Ready Group and Marine Expeditionary Unit 24 are currently at sea as part of a composite training unit exercise.