A US Marine F-35B was forced to make an emergency landing at a Japanese Self-Defence Forces base in the Fukuoka Prefecture yesterday, the result of a maintenance issue that forced to pilot to set the aircraft down early.
Tsuiki Air Base personnel were treated to a rare sight yesterday after the Marine Lighting II was forced to land after announcing an emergency at around 11AM.
According to a press statement issued by the Okinawa-based III Marine Expeditionary Force, “the pilot received a cockpit indication and elected to land the aircraft at the nearest airport where a safe landing could be made with the most suitable weather conditions.”
The F-35’s emergency stop at a Japanese base is the second of such landings in the past week, with the tally currently at five for the entire year.
On April 18, a UH-1Y Venom of the 1st Marine Aircraft Wing at Kumamoto Airport after the pilot was alerted to a potential oil-cooling problem.
In response to other incidents this year, the Japanese are attempting to take a more active role in ensuring US military air safety over their island nation.
According to Stars and Stripes, the F-35B first arrived in Japan in January of 2017 (assigned to the USS Wasp), one whole year before the USAF F-35As were delivered to Misawa Air Base.
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