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Japan loses one F-15DJ in a crash

A JASDF F-15 Eagle multirole fighter. A JASDF F-15DJ twin-seat conversion trainer aircraft crashed at sea on 31 Janaury 2022. (US Air Force)

A Japan Air Self-Defense Force's (JASDF's) Boeing-Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (MHI) F-15DJ twin-seat operational trainer aircraft crashed at sea on 31 January.

The Japanese Ministry of Defense (MoD) stated on 1 February that the aircraft (c/n 32-8083), which belonged to the JASDF Air Tactical Fighter Training Group, took off from Komatsu Air Base at 1730 local time on 31 January for regular combat training activities.

The aircraft disappeared from radars shortly after take-off, about 5 km west-northwest from Komatsu Air Base, off the Sea of Japan, the MoD said, adding that the JASDF is investigating the causes of the accident and operations to find the two missing pilots are ongoing.

At the time of publication, the JASDF had not decided to ground the fleet.

The MoD said that search-and-rescue (SAR) activities are being carried out by two U-125A (Hawker 800) SAR aircraft and two MHI UH-60J SAR helicopters of the JASDF, along with patrol boats from the Japan Coast Guard, one MHI SH-60K maritime helicopter and five ships belonging to the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force.

The MoD said that parts of the aircraft's fuselage and its life-saving equipment were found later in the day by the rescue team, which determined that the aircraft likely crashed at sea. No damage was reported to ships navigating in the area.

According to Janes World Air Forces

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