Black Hawk crashed near Taiwan

Could the Black Hawk had been brought down by some unknown forces? And why were neither one of the two pilots not given a fraction of a second to send a SOS message before going down?

Now Japan is searching for 10 people aboard crashed military helicopter off Miyakojimar.

Could the Black Hawk had been brought down by some unknown forces?

Reuters by Tim Kelly, ~ April 6, 2023 // BBC

TOKYO, April 6 (Reuters) – Japan on Thursday said rescue efforts were under way to locate any survivors after one of its military helicopters carrying 10 people crashed in the sea near Miyakojima, part of the country’s southwest Okinawa island chain.

General Yasunori Morishita, chief of staff of Japan’s Ground Self-Defense Force (GSDF), said two pilots, two mechanics, and six passengers are among the missing personnel, including Lt. Gen. Yuichi Sakamoto, a top GSDF commander.

This crash comes just days after nine US soldiers were killed in a mid-air collision involving two Black Hawk helicopters near Fort Campbell, Kentucky.

The UH60 troop transport, commonly known as the Black Hawk, disappeared from radar tracking after leaving a Ground Self Defense Force base on Miyakojima, General Yasunori Morishita said at a press briefing.

The aircraft’s last known position was 18 km northwest of Miyako Airport

The aircraft was patrolling the waters around Miyakojima during an aerial reconnaissance mission, Morishita said. The helicopter was stationed at a key regional army base in Kumamoto prefecture on the southern main island of Kyushu; and one of its 10 crew members is the division commander, Yuichi Sakamoto.

NHK public television earlier said the helicopter disappeared from radar about an hour after it departed from Miyako island and about half an hour before its scheduled return.

The average cruising speed of a Black Hawk is around 174 mph with a deployment range of 1,200 nautical miles. The aircraft’s last known position was 18 km northwest of Miyako Airport. Japan Coast Guard and naval vessels were deployed to search the area.

Chinese navy vessels traveling to the Pacific Ocean from the East China Sea often pass close to Miyakojima, which has hosted GSDF mobile anti-ship missile launchers since 2019.

In the past four days, amid growing tension over a meeting between Taiwanese President Tsai Ing-wen and US House Speaker Kevin McCarthy, at least three Chinese warships have sailed past the island.

Japan searching for 10 people aboard a crashed Black Hawk helicopter

Morishita did not say whether the helicopter was involved in tracking any Chinese military activity.

The government’s priority now is to rescue those who were on board, Japan Prime Minister Fumio Kishida said in comments aired by public broadcaster NHK.

Japanese Coast Guard and military ships and aircraft that located aircraft wreckage in the water were searching for the missing four helicopter crew members and six passengers. Yuichi Sakamoto, a senior GSDF commander, is among the missing.

~ by Joel Huan on April 9, 2023.

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