One Marine died and at least a dozen were injured in what the Marine Corps described as a "hard-landing mishap" at a Bellows Air Force Base in Hawaii Sunday, the military confirmed to NBC News. NBC reported 22 people were aboard the MV-22 Osprey aircraft at the time of the incident, and all the survivors were taken to a hospital for assessment.
The Osprey involved in the incident belonged to the 15th Marine Expeditionary Unit based at Camp Pendleton, California, the Associated Press reported.
The incident comes as Marine Corps Forces Pacific kicks off an inaugural symposium for allied and partner foreign countries in Hawaii this week, the Honolulu Star-Advertiser reported. The symposium is scheduled to feature an amphibious operations exercise, as well as discussions about how to develop collaborative responses to international crises.
The Osprey has been taking part in exercises in connection with the event, the Star-Advertiser reported. The aircraft has wings, but can also maneuver like a helicopter. It has the ability to carry 24 combat troops "twice as fast and five times farther than previous helicopters," according to a Marine Corps website.
Local resident Donald Gahit told the Associated Press he saw smoke coming from the Air Force station. “At first I thought it was clouds, but it was moving fast and it was pretty dark,” Gahit said.