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One Dead in Singapore Copter Crash

July 16, 2002

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SINGAPORE (AP) _ Two U.S. Marine helicopters collided at an airstrip here Tuesday, killing a Singaporean technician on the tarmac, the U.S. Navy said.

No casualties were reported aboard the two CH-53 Marine Corps helicopters, a Navy statement said.

The choppers’ main rotors struck each other as the helicopters taxied to park at Singapore’s Paya Lebar Air Base early in the afternoon, the release said.

Debris from the collision struck the Singaporean ground crewman, who was taken to a hospital where he died.

The names of the pilots and the technician were not immediately released.

U.S. military forces frequently use this island nation’s airfields and naval facilities for training exercises and for resupply.

The Sea Stallion heavy lift choppers involved in the accident were on a transport mission from Paya Lebar to the USS Belleau Wood, a 40,000-ton helicopter carrier attached to the Seventh Fleet, the statement said.

The CH-53s are part of the 11th Marine Expeditionary Unit based in California.

Update hourly