Announcing the final results of its monthslong investigation into the cause of the July crash of a Marine Corps chopper, a team of civilian, government and military experts on Friday cited defects in the rotor mast.
Five service members were killed when the MUH-1 Marineon, the Marine variant of the KUH-1 Surion helicopter, crashed shortly after a maintenance checkup at a military airport in the southeastern city of Pohang on July 17.
Investigators conduced a six-stage probe that included the analysis of flight data, CCTV footage and the disassembled fuselage.
The accident occurred when the main rotor became separated due to a fracture of the rotor mast, they said.
It was confirmed to be attributable to a crack in the rotor mast when manufactured, they added.
The announcement is in line with the tentative results of a probe made public on Sept. 21.
The Korea Aerospace Industries, a South Korean defense firm, developed the Marineon with technological support from Airbus Helicopters, formerly the Eurocopter, which produced the Super Puma.
The Marines received the helicopters in January with a plan to introduce 28 Marineons by 2023. (Yonhap)