Catastrophe Strikes US Military After Explosion Reported

Weapons, tanks, ships, helicopters, and other specialized equipment are used by every branch of the military to complete duties. They must perform regular training exercises long before they are ever dispatched into the field in order to prepare for them. Sadly, things can go very wrong during these training sessions. Such a situation just occurred in Kentucky.

The 101st Airborne Division was conducting training on the evening of March 29 about 40 miles from Kentucky’s Fort Campbell Army Base when an explosion shook the area. The nine servicemen aboard two HH60 Blackhawk helicopters perished when they collided in midair. It happened around ten o’clock in the evening.

The nine crew members were using night-vision goggles to practice medical evacuation drills and were said to be practicing what’s called a “multi-ship formation” during the training exercise, but that’s not what caused the accident. According to CBS News, one helicopter had five service members on board while the other had four, a setup that Deputy Commander of the division, Brigadier general John Lubas, said is “fairly typical.” The Army is unsure of what caused the incident, although it appears that they collided while merely flying.

The training sessions are routine; they happen most nights. Living close to the crash site, Nick Tomaszewski claims he frequently observes them. The Blackhawks were flying low and considerably closer together than usual that night, too, and he observed both of these abnormalities. According to him, a “firework” went out, followed by a sizable “fireball,” as reported to the Associated Press.

The names of the deceased have not yet been revealed by the US Army since it has not notified the next of kin while an aircraft safety team is investigating the tragedy.

In addition to expressing his condolences, Tennessee Governor Bill Lee (R) and Kentucky Governor Andy Beshear (D) indicated they were prepared to assist the families.

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