Friday, October 30, 2009

Wire: Coast Guard Plane Collides With Marine Chopper Off Calif. Coast

Off the Wire

Off the Wire:

WASHINGTON, Oct. 30, 2009 -- Newswire services this morning reported that as many as nine people were believed to be missing after a Coast Guard plane collided with a military helicopter off the Southern California coast Thursday, officials said.

The crash was reported at 7:10 p.m., about 15 miles east off San Clemente Island, Coast Guard spokeswoman Petty Officer Allyson Conroy said.

The Associated Press reported that a pilot reported seeing a fireball in the vicinity of the suspected crash site, Federal Aviation Administration spokesman Ian Gregor said.
Gregor said preliminary information indicated the crash was between a Marine Corps AH-1 Cobra and a Coast Guard C-130 transport plane.

There were seven people on board the C-130 and two on the chopper, Gregor said.

Marine Corps spokesman Cpl. Michael Stevens confirmed an AH-1 Cobra had crashed. He had no additional details.

A search and rescue mission was underway.

San Clemente Island, the southernmost of the eight Channel Islands, is 68 miles west of San Diego.
(Report from newswire sources.)

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