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Marine Corps Harrier aboard Norfolk-based USS Kearsarge damaged in Mediterranean

An AV-8B Harrier with the 22nd Marine Expeditionary Unit prepares to take off from the flight deck during flight operations aboard the amphibious assault ship USS Kearsarge on Dec. 31, 2018. A Harrier aboard the Kearsarge was damaged in an incident while deployed to the Mediterranean.

AARON HENSON/U.S. MARINE CORPS

By COURTNEY MABEUS | The Virginian-Pilot | Published: January 17, 2019

(Tribune News Service) — A Marine Corps AV-8B Harrier aboard the amphibious assault ship USS Kearsarge sucked in a refueling strap in the Mediterranean earlier this month causing at least $2 million in damage, according to the Navy.

Lt. Cmdr. Amelia Umavan, a spokesperson for the Navy's 6th Fleet said the incident occurred during routine maintenance. The aircraft is operated by the 22nd Marine Expeditionary Unit, which deployed with the Norfolk-based Kearsarge in mid-December. The 22nd MEU is based out of Camp Lejeune, NC.

"No one was injured and an investigation is underway in order to learn from the incident and prevent future occurrences," Umayan said in an email.

The Naval Safety Center classified the damage as "Class A," meaning property damage totaled more than $2 million or caused permanent damage and/or loss of life or permanent disability.

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