Marine Corps blames human error for helicopter window falling onto school grounds
CAMP FOSTER, Okinawa — The Marine Corps says human error caused a helicopter window to fall onto the grounds of a crowded elementary school last week on Okinawa.
The incident occurred Wednesday morning when a CH-53E Super Stallion’s window inexplicably became separated from the aircraft and landed on Futenma Daini Elementary School’s sports field, which is adjacent to Marine Corps Air Station Futenma’s fence line. More than 50 schoolchildren were playing at the time, and one boy was slightly injured from a pebble that flew up during impact.
The 1st Marine Aircraft Wing has completed a “thorough” investigation into the incident and determined it was caused by human error, officials said a statement released Monday evening.
The window, which was not properly secured before takeoff, was designed to be removed so that the crew can evacuate during an emergency, the statement said.
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