11 Dead in US Army Helicopter Crash

11 Dead in US Army Helicopter Crash11 Dead in US Army Helicopter Crash

Eleven Marines and four soldiers were presumed dead after an army helicopter crashed during a nighttime training mission off the Florida coast, where some remains have washed ashore and search efforts were hampered by heavy fog, US military officials said on Wednesday.

A US military official, speaking on condition of anonymity, said the 11 service members aboard were presumed dead in what could be among the deadliest domestic military training accidents in years.

Bourland said the helicopter was believed to have gone down over water during the mission. He said he did not know how fog in the area affected visibility, Reuters reported.

The Marines were part of a special operations unit from Camp Lejeune in North Carolina, while the air crew and helicopter belonged to the Louisiana Army National Guard, Bourland said.

Four crew members were part of the Louisiana National Guard, according to a news release from the state governor's office. A second helicopter involved in the training landed safely, Bourland said. Names of the missing troops were being withheld pending notification of next of kin, said Bourland.

A spokeswoman for the Eglin Air Force Base in north Florida did not provide details on the remains.

"This is still considered a search and rescue mission," spokeswoman Sara Vidoni said in a statement, adding that heavy fog hampered search efforts.

One of two UH-60 Black Hawk helicopters participating in the routine exercise crashed near the base 80km east of Pensacola, and rescue workers discovered debris around 2 a.m. local time on Wednesday, base spokesman Andy Bourland said.