Two 2nd ID soldiers killed in vehicle accident
April 4, 2003
SEOUL — Two 2nd Infantry Division soldiers were killed and five injured when a pair of vehicles crashed at 10:45 a.m. Wednesday at the Korea Training Center, officials confirmed.
A 56-ton M48 Armored Vehicle Launched Bridge and a 2.5-ton tactical vehicle, which was carrying troops, collided during a regularly scheduled exercise at the center, according to a news release.
Two soldiers were treated for injuries at Camp Casey. Five were transported via 542nd Medical Evacuation UH-60 Black Hawk helicopters to Yongsan Garrison’s 121st General Hospital, where two died, said base officials. The other three soldiers were listed in stable condition late Wednesday afternoon.
Maj. Brian Maka, 2nd ID spokesman, declined to provide names or units until family members are notified.
The M48 Armored Vehicle Launched Bridge (AVLB) is a 56-ton tracked armored vehicle used to surmount gaps and obstacles. It has the same chassis as an Armored Vehicle Launched Mine Clearing Line Charge — the type of 2nd ID vehicle involved in a fatal accident last June.
In that incident, Sgt. Mark Walker and Sgt. Fernando Nino were driving the AVLM in an off-base convoy when they crushed two 13-year-old South Korean girls to death.
Defense attorneys in the Walker and Nino courts-martial argued that a faulty communication system in the vehicle caused the accident. Both soldiers were acquitted of negligent-homicide charges.
The tragedy sparked outrage in South Korea, prompting 2nd ID leaders to create and enforce new safety precautions — called the “New Face Safety Program.”
Military officials told Stars and Stripes last year they made procedural, organizational and informational changes to the division’s transportation safety program, mainly with convoys. Safety officials took a close look at a pamphlet for convoy commanders and a regulation on transportation support and movement, officials said.
Wednesday’s accident is under investigation by military police and the 2nd ID safety office.