The U.S. military has banned all flights of the Osprey V-22 aircraft off the southwest coast of Japan after the recent fatal crash of the U.S. military’s Osprey V-22 aircraft. According to the AP agency, the grounding of the plane, on which the air force, navy and marines agreed, is quite exceptional. They were led to this by the conclusions of the preliminary investigation, according to which the accident with eight victims was most likely a machine failure, and not human error.
The accident raised new questions about the safety of the Osprey, which has had several fatal accidents in its relatively short service life. The Bell Boeing V-22 Osprey, a conversion plane combining the functions of a helicopter and a turboprop aircraft thanks to flip-up rotors, began to be used by the US military in 2007.
The Air Force Special Operations Command has 51 Ospreys, the Marines have about 400, and the Navy operates 27. Japan also grounded its fleet of 14 Ospreys after the accident.
“Preliminary information from the investigation indicates that the accident was caused by a potential material failure, but the root cause of the failure is unknown at this time,” said Air Force Special Operations Command chief Lt. Gen. Tony Bauernfeind. He ordered the shutdown “to mitigate the risk while the investigation continues.”
The military did not say how long the ban would be in place, but it is expected to remain in place until an investigation determines the cause of the crash in Japan.