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Marine Corps grounds KC-130T fleet weeks after deadly crash

The Marine Corps is grounding its fleet of KC-130Ts until further notice, just weeks after one of the planes crashed in Mississippi, killing 15 Marines and one Navy sailor.

The move to ground the planes comes out of an abundance of caution and will be in place until further notice, a U.S. official told CBS News. The grounding was first reported by Defense News. 

All 12 KC-130T aircraft operated by the Marine Corps are subject to the grounding. The order does not affect the KC-130J, a newer model of the plane.

16 killed in deadliest Marine plane crash in over a decade

On July 11, a KC-130 air tanker carrying Marines to Arizona for training slammed into a soybean field in Mississippi in the deadliest crash involving a Marine aircraft since 2005. Witnesses described seeing the plane spiraling toward the ground before exploding in a fireball.

The plane experienced a catastrophic failure at 20,000 feet and its communications systems went dead as it fell out of the sky. A Pentagon official told reporters the day after the crash that "something went wrong at cruising altitude."

Six of the Marines and the sailor were based out of Camp Lejeune in North Carolina. Nine Marines were based in New York.

The Pentagon's investigation into the crash is ongoing. 

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