Tag Archives: marine amtrac

Amtracs are no joke

For years we had a company of the 4th Amtrac Bn stationed here in Gulfport and you often saw the giant AAVP7s moving around and operating offshore. They even responded to flooded neighborhoods after Katrina.

If you have ever seen an amtrac hit the water, you instantly realize why they call these cavernous tracks, “Iron Ducks.”

Sadly, one Marine is confirmed dead as well as seven additional Marines and one Sailor are missing and presumed to have likewise perished off the coast of Southern California following the swamping of an amtrac in a training exercise.

From I MEF: 

After an extensive 40-hour search, the 15th Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU). I Marine Expeditionary force. and the Makin Island Amphibious Ready Group (ARG) concluded their search and rescue operation for seven missing Marines and one Sailor, today.

All eight service members are presumed deceased. The 15th MEU and the ARG leadership determined that there was little probability of a successful rescue given the circumstances of the incident.

On July 30, 15 Marines and one Sailor were participating in a routine training exercise off the coast of San Clemente Island, California, when the amphibious assault vehicle they were riding in, began to take on water and sank. Of the 16 service members, eight Marines were rescued, one died and two others are in critical condition at a local hospital.

“It is with a heavy heart, that I decided to conclude the search and rescue effort,” said Col. Christopher Bronzi, 15th MEU Commanding Officer. “The steadfast dedication of the Marines, Sailors. and Coast Guardsmen to the persistent rescue effort was tremendous.”

Over the course of the at-sea search, Marine Corps, Navy, and Coast Guard helicopter, ships and watercraft searched more than I,000 square nautical miles.

Assisting in the search efforts were the USS John Finn. the USS Makin Island, the USS Somerset, and the USS San Diego. Eleven U.S. Navy SH-60 helicopters and multiple Navy and Manne Corps small boats were also involved. The U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Forrest Rednour and a Coast Guard MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter from Coast Guard Sector San Diego assisted as well

“Our thoughts and prayers have been, and will continue to be with our Marines’ and Sailor’s families during this difficult time,” said Bronzi. “As we turn to recovery operations we will continue our exhaustive search for our missing Marines and Sailor.”

Efforts will now turn to finding and recovering the Marines and Sailor still missing. Assisting in the recovery efforts is the offshore supply vessel HOS Dominator, as well as Undersea Rescue Command, utilizing their Remotely Operated Vehicle to survey the sea floor.

The circumstances surrounding the incident are being investigated. The names of the Marines and Sailor will be released 24-hours after next of kin notification.

Secretary of Defense Dr. Mark T. Esper issued the following statement:

A grateful nation and the Department of Defense grieves the tragic loss of the Marines and Sailor lost in the amphibious assault vehicle accident off the coast of San Clemente Island. Our prayers and condolences are with the family and friends of these brave young men:

Lance Cpl. Guillermo S. Perez, 20, of New Braunfels, Texas
Pfc. Bryan J. Baltierra, 19, of Corona, California
Lance Cpl. Marco A. Barranco, 21, of Montebello, California
Pfc. Evan A. Bath, 19, of Oak Creek, Wisconsin
U.S. Navy Hospitalman Christopher Gnem, 22, of Stockton, California
Pfc. Jack Ryan Ostrovsky, 21, of Bend, Oregon
Cpl. Wesley A. Rodd, 23, of Harris, Texas
Lance Cpl. Chase D. Sweetwood, 19, of Portland, Oregon
Cpl. Cesar A. Villanueva, 21, of Riverside, California

Their service, commitment and courage will always be remembered by the nation they served. While the incident remains under investigation, I want to assure our service members and their families that we are committed to gathering all the facts, understanding exactly how this incident occurred, and preventing similar tragedies in the future.

Spotted- an Amtrac R7

Played around near one of these today so thought I would share since its kinda rare to spot one in the wild. Its the recovery vehicle variant of the Marine amtrac. Since FMC made less than 1400 amtracs, and this subvariant probably accounts for less than 10% of that production, I figured I would share…

IMG03014-20130320-1630

From the dossier:
AAVR-7A1 (Recovery): This vehicle also does not have a turret. The R7 is considered the
“wrecker”, as it has a crane as well as most tools and equipment needed for field repairs. It is by far the heaviest of the three, and sits considerably lower in the water. Crew of three, not including the repairmen. The vehicle is designed to recover similar or smaller size vehicles. It also carries basic maintenance equipment to provide field support maintenance to vehicles in the field.

800px-US_Navy_020912-N-8087H-005_AAV_launches_from_the_well_deck
Manufacturer: FMC Corporation
Date First Prototype: 1979
Date First Production Vehicle: 1983
Weight:
Unloaded: 50,113 Pounds (Less Crew, Fuel, OEM, and Ammo)
Combat Equipped: 52,123 Pounds (Crew, Fuel, OEM, and Ammo)
Load Capacity: 21 Combat Equipped Troops (@ 285 Pounds) or 10,000 Pounds of Cargo
Fuel Capacity: 171 Gallons
Cruising Range:
Land at 25 MPH: 300 Miles
Water at 2600 RPM: 7 Hours
Cruising Speed:
Land: 20 to 30 MPH
Water: 6 MPH
Maximum Speed Forward:
Land: 45 MPH
Water: 8.2 MPH
Maximum Speed Reverse:
Land: 12 MPH
Water: 4.5 MPH
Engine:
Make: Cummins
Model: VT400
Type: 4 Cycle, 8 Cylinder, 90′ Vee, Water Cooled, Turbocharged
Fuel: Multifuel
Recovery Equipment:
Generator: 120 VAC Output
Air compressor: 145 PSIG to 175 PSIG
Welder: Miller Maxtron 300
Hydraulic Crane: 6000 Pounds Capacity
Crane Winch: 23,000 pounds Breaking Strength/ Length 85 Feet
Armament and Ammunition: M60D Machine Gun (currently the M240G)
Unit Replacement Cost: $2.2 – 2.5 Million