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US Army grounds air units for training after deadly helicopter crashes

After helicopter crashes that killed 12 soldiers, in Alaska and Kentucky, the US Army has grounded its air units for training.

The suspension of operations has been implemented immediately until the personnel receives training.

The training for active duty units will be completed in the next week. National guard and reserve forces will have until the 31st May to complete their course.

The US Army issued a statement saying that “the move will ground all army aviators except those who are participating in critical missions until they have completed the required training.”


Two army helicopters collided on Thursday near Healy in Alaska, , killing three soldiers, and injuring another.

According to the Army, the aircraft were returning from training when the crash occurred.

The Arctic Angels, or 11th Airborne Division is the unit’s nickname.

Alaska: More Information

Military investigators visited the accident site.

The army said that two soldiers died on site, and the third one was on his way to the hospital.

The injured soldier was said to be stable.

Picture: The aircraft belonged to the 11th Airborne Division – the Arctic Angels. Picture: AP

James McConville, the army chief of Staff, said that the grounding of flight units was a necessary step in order to ensure safety and protection of personnel.

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This is the second helicopter crash in Alaska this year.

Two soldiers were injured in February when an Apache helicopter that had taken off from Talkeetna rolled.

In March, 9 soldiers died when two US Army Black Hawk helicopters crashed at night during a routine training exercise, about 30 miles (50km), northeast of Fort Campbell in Kentucky.

Image: Debris after the helicopter crash that killed nine soldiers

At the time, US Army Secretary Christine Wormuth described it as a “heavy” day and the accident was one of the most serious for the military over the past few years.

While the crash in Kentucky and Thursday’s accident are still under investigation, the army said “there is no evidence of a pattern between the two mishaps”.


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