Accidental deaths of nine US service members blamed on burnout
The US Marine Corps concluded its investigation into the 2020 training accident that killed nine service members, finding that pandemic burnout was central to their deaths.
“The claims on their time and attention surfaced in a number of interviews with several senior officers who described the conditions during this period as second only to their experience in combat,” Lt. Gen. Carl Mundy III found in the report.
Eight Marines and one sailor drowned when their AAV sank off the California coast. A previous investigation found that the deaths were “preventable.” Poor vehicle maintenance and human error contributed to the disaster.
The new report prompted the Navy and Marine Corps to promise changes.
“This tragedy should never have occurred,” Vice Adm. Roy Kitchener said. “We will not let the lives be lost in vain. We have learned from this, and we will permanently improve the way we plan and execute amphibious operations.”