The Navy is investigating what caused a fuel tank to fall from a utility helicopter while it was on the ground last week, killing one sailor and injuring another.
Naval Helicopter Aircrewman 1st Class Jonathan Richard Clement was killed July 30 when an HH-60H Sea Hawk's auxiliary fuel tank detached from the aircraft and landed on him and another sailor at Naval Air Station North Island, California.
Clement died at the hospital, according to the Naval Safety Center. The other sailor involved, a petty officer second class, sustained minor injuries and was treated and released from the hospital the same day, said Cmdr. Ron Flanders, a spokesman for Naval Air Forces.
The Navy did not publicly disclose the deadly mishap when it happened and had not previously released any information about the accident or the sailor who died.
The incident happened "during hotseat," the Naval Safety Center reported. The intent of hot-seating aircraft is to launch and execute the next mission prior to shutting down the aircraft, according to Navy helicopter standard operating procedures.
The cause of the mishap remains under investigation, Flanders said. There is no timetable on when it will be complete.
Clement was born in Florida and enlisted in the Navy in 2007. He was assigned to Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron 85, based out of San Diego.
He rated the Enlisted Naval Aircrew Warfare Specialist and Enlisted Aviation Warfare Specialist badges. Clement also had four Navy and Marine Corps Achievement medals, a Good Conduct medal and a Sea Service Deployment ribbon, according to his personnel records.
Last year, Air Force Staff Sgt. Alexandria Mae Morrow died from injuries after a bomb she was loading onto an aircraft slipped and hit her on the head. She was deployed to the Middle East at the time.