An MV-22 Osprey pictured at an RAAF Base in Townsville. Photo: US ArmyA search is under way after a US military helicopter crashed off the coast of Queensland.
The aircraft, anMV-22 Osprey, is believed to have crashed on Saturday afternoon, with several of those on board unaccounted for.
Other military aircraft and ships have been sent to the area, where they arecombing the water for any sign of the missing service members.
In a statement, the US Marine Corps Public Affairs Office said there had been a “mishap”.
“The United States Marine Corps confirms there is an active search and rescue mission ongoing for service members involved in an MV-22 mishap off the east coast of ,” the statement said.
“Ships, small boats and aircraft from the 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit and Bonhomme Richard Expeditionary Strike Group are conducting the search and rescue operations.
“We will provide more details as they become available.”
The crash occurred off the coast of Rockhampton.
US forceswere in forTalisman Saber, a joint military exercise involving 33,000 US and ntroopswhich isheld each two years.
The combat readiness training, which was expected to end in late July, was basedat Shoalwater Bay Training Area, near Rockhampton.
MV-22s have been involved in several serious crashes, some of them fatal, in the 10 years they have been used by the US military.
An MV-22had a “hard landing” during a raid in Yemenin January this year, injuring three soldiers on board. The $75 million aircraft was then destroyed by an air strike.
In December 2016, the USgrounded its fleet of the aircraft in Japan, after one crash-landed off Okinawa. That incident was also described as a “mishap”.