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15 Marines, 1 sailor injured in Lejeune AAV accident

Sixteen North Carolina-based troops were injured Friday night in a training accident involving an amphibious assault vehicle, Marine officials announced.

Fifteen Marines and one sailor with Battalion Landing Team, 3rd Battalion, 6th Marines, were injured during an amphibious raid, according to a Marine Corps official. The accident occurred during a predeployment training exercise at Camp Lejeune, North Carolina, the official said.

All 16 injured troops were transported to Naval Hospital Camp Lejeune and New Hanover Hospital for treatment, according to a Marine Corps news release. Three Marines remain hospitalized.

The accident, which occurred at about 8 p.m., remains under investigation. The incident involved only one AAV, the release states.

No further details about the nature of the accident were immediately available.

"The safety of our Marines and sailors remains paramount, and the accident is currently under investigation to determine its cause," the release states.

The Marines and sailor are currently assigned to the 24th Marine Expeditionary Unit, which is preparing to deploy later this year. The MEU is in the last leg of its predeployment workup called Composite Training Unit Exercise.

In September 2013, Cpl. Nicholas Sell was killed and four other Marines injured when an AAV caught fire during a training event at the Marine Corps Air Ground Combat Center in Twentynine Palms, California. In October 2011, Sgt. Christopher J. Jacobs was killed in an AAV mishap at Twentynine Palms. About nine months prior, Sgt. Wesley J. Rice was killed when the AAV he was riding in sank in shallow water at Camp Pendleton, California.

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