Aviation Mishaps Are Skyrocketing For Nearly Every Branch Of The US Armed Forces

Ryan Pickrell | China/Asia Pacific Reporter

Military aircraft in almost every branch of the armed services are increasingly involved in accidents and crashes, many of which have proven fatal for the American military personnel on board.

Aviation mishaps have reportedly increased 82 percent for the Navy, 80 percent for the Marine Corps, and 16 percent for the Air Force over the past five years, the Military Times reveals, citing Department of Defense data. The Army’s statistics have remained fairly consistent.

The Navy had more accidents than any other branch.

An estimated 47 service members have died in aviation mishaps in the past year. These unfortunate incidents include the July 10, 2017 Marine Corps KC-130 crash in Mississippi that killed 16, the August 15, 2017 Army UH-60 Black Hawk crash in Hawaii that ended the lives of five people, the March 15, 2018 Air Force HH-60 Pave Hawk crash that killed seven in Iraq, and the Navy F/A-18 Super Hornet crashes a day earlier that led to the loss of two naval aviators, Task and Purpose reported.

The U.S. military experienced three aviation crashes in less than two days earlier in April, and two of the tree incidents were fatal.

Over the past five years, 133 service members have been killed in aviation mishaps. In addition to the tragic loss of life, aviation accidents have also cost the military millions of dollars in equipment at a time when numerous aircraft are already unable to fly. As a whole, military aircraft mishaps have spiked nearly 40 percent between 2013 and 2017.

The marked increase in accidents and crashes is believed to be linked to Obama-era defense budget cuts, which appear to have affected training and combat readiness across the military.

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