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Two US Marines were killed and 17 more were reported injured when they were ejected from the back of a military vehicle., in a traffic accident in North Carolina, according to the Highway Patrol.
Two of the Marines were pronounced dead at the scene, their identities unknown, while two others were airlifted to Vidant Medical Center in Greenville; the other 15 passengers were transported by land.
The truck driver, Louis Barrera, age 19, has been charged with exceeding a “safe speed” and will face two counts of death by a motor vehicle, according to the highway patrol.
A Marine, who was ejected from the truck, was run over by another military vehicle that was following the convoy, police said.
The vehicle was transporting a total of 19 infantrymen, all from the 2nd Marine Logistics Group, stationed at Camp Lejeune. The driver, Louis Barrera of Springfield, Tennessee, and the passenger in the front of the vehicle were apparently uninjured.
Officials will release the victims’ identifications once family members have been notified while the investigation into the crash continues, the North Carolina Highway Patrol said.
North Carolina Highway Patrol Sgt. Devin Rich told a news conference that he wasn’t sure if this was part of a training mission.
The 2nd Marine Logistics Group had initially posted on Twitter: “We are aware of a vehicle rollover in Jacksonville, North Carolina, involving service members with the 2nd MLG. We are working closely with @camp_lejeune and Onslow County officials to gather details on this incident.”
Camp Lejeune is located in southeastern North Carolina along the Atlantic coast. It is home to more than 30,000 people.
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Eddie is an Australian news reporter with over 9 years in the industry and has published on Forbes and tech crunch.