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1 Marine killed, 14 injured at Camp Pendleton

Camp Pendleton.(UT File Photo/San Diego Union-Tribune/TNS)
December 14, 2023

A vehicle rollover incident that occurred during a training exercise at Camp Pendleton in California on Tuesday resulted in the death of one United States Marine and injuries to 14 other Marines.

The 15th Marine Expeditionary Unit released a press release Wednesday, stating, “One Marine assigned to the 15th Marine Expeditionary Unit died in a tactical vehicle rollover on Dec. 12 at Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton.”

The 15th Marine Expeditionary Unit noted that the tragic vehicle rollover incident took place around 6 p.m. local time while the tactical vehicle was “making a ground movement” during training.

The press release added, “Fourteen other Marines were in the Amphibious Combat Vehicle (ACV) at the time and were taken to local hospitals and Naval Hospital Camp Pendleton for evaluation and treatment.”

Tuesday’s press release announced that the fatal training accident is currently under investigation and that the name of the Marine who was killed in the incident is being withheld until the family is notified. Additionally, the Marine unit explained that the names of the 14 injured Marines have been withheld “in accordance with Department of Defense policy.”

While the 15th Marine Expeditionary Unit did not immediately reveal the cause of the rollover accident, reported that vehicle rollovers are one of the leading causes of fatalities for on-duty service members.

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A report by the Government Accountability Office in 2021 revealed that over 120 U.S. soldiers and Marines had been killed in non-combat tactical vehicle accidents since 2011. The Government Accountability Office’s report cited inadequate training and limited safety oversight by military leaders as contributing factors to the number of deaths caused by tactical vehicle accidents in the military.

“Driver inattention, supervision lapses, and training shortfalls were common causes,” the report’s summary states. “The Army and Marine Corps have practices to mitigate and prevent tactical vehicle accidents, but units don’t always use them.”