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YOKOSUKA, Japan - The U.S. Navy will deploy a team of deep water salvage experts to search for the C-2A Greyhound aircraft that crashed in the Philippine Sea on the way to USS Ronald Reagan (CVN 76), Nov. 22.
While the aircraft’s last position on the surface of the water is known, the depth of water in that area exceeds 16,000 feet, beyond the capabilities of salvage assets in theater.
In the coming days, a team of deep water salvage experts led by U.S. Navy’s Supervisor of Salvage and Diving (SUPSALV) will deploy from Washington D.C. The salvage team will embark a U.S. Navy-contracted salvage vessel in Japan and proceed to the crash site at sea. Once on station, highly skilled operators will search for the aircraft’s emergency relocation pinger with a U.S. Navy-owned towed pinger locator (TPL-25) system.
If the search is successful, additional deep water salvage assets will deploy to survey and recover the aircraft. Every effort will be made to recover the fallen Sailors.
Assigned to Fleet Logistics Support Squadron (VRC) 30, forward deployed to Japan, the C-2A aircraft was carrying 11 crew and passengers when it crashed. Eight personnel were recovered immediately by U.S. Navy Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron (HSC 12). For the next three days, Ronald Reagan led combined search and rescue for three Sailors with the Japan Maritime Self Defense Force (JMSDF), covering nearly 1,000 square nautical miles before ending the search.
An investigation is in progress.