NORFOLK, Va. (AP) - The commanding officer of a Norfolk-based squadron has been removed from command after two incidents involving helicopters under her command, one of which resulted in the death of two sailors.
The commander of the Helicopter Sea Combat Wing Atlantic relieved Cmdr. Sara Santoski of command of the Helicopter Mine Countermeasures Squadron Fifteen on Saturday.
Santoski has been reassigned to the staff of the commander of Naval Air Force Atlantic because of a loss of confidence in her ability to command.
A helicopter in her squadron crashed in July in Oman, killed two sailors. There also was another mishap in August at the Bahrain International Airport.
The Navy says initial findings show that Santoski failed to ensure a proper command climate and strictly enforce appropriate operational, maintenance and safety standards.