Fatal sliver:Investigators have determined that the blade...

Newswatch ... ON THE NATION

September 23, 1993

Fatal sliver:

Investigators have determined that the blade of a U.S. Marine Corps attack helicopter made in Fort Worth, Texas, cracked Sept. 8 because of a sliver of metal between the blade and the protective strip of metal covering its leading edge.

The crash of the Bell Helicopter Textron AH-1W, the Marines' primary attack helicopter, prompted the U.S. military to ground all 124 aircraft. In the crash, a Marine pilot and Navy flight surgeon were killed after witnesses said the craft appeared to come apart in flight and crashed at Montgomery Field in San Diego.

All the AH-1Ws, or Super Cobras, are expected to fly again by the end of next month after they are inspected and, as needed, repaired, investigators said.

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