THE VIRGINIAN-PILOT Copyright (c) 1996, Landmark Communications, Inc. DATE: Thursday, October 24, 1996 TAG: 9610240334 SECTION: FRONT PAGE: A7 EDITION: FINAL DATELINE: TOKYO LENGTH: 23 lines
Errors by the gunnery officer and captain of a Japanese destroyer are to blame for the accidental downing of a U.S. warplane during war games June 4, 1,600 miles west of Hawaii, according to a Japanese investigation released Wednesday.
The two U.S. Navy aviators aboard the A6-E Intruder ejected safely and were rescued by the Japanese destroyer Yuugiri, which had shot them down.
A Defense Agency investigation concluded that the Yuugiri's gunnery officer gave the order to fire before contact was made with the U.S. plane to confirm its position, Cmdr. Katsuhiro Otsuki of the Maritime Self Defense Force said Wednesday.
Otsuki said the destroyer's captain was faulted for failing to detect the gunnery officer's mistake. Disciplinary measures, yet to be decided, will be taken soon against the two officers, Otsuki said.
KEYWORDS: A6-E ACCIDENT MILITARY ACCIDENT PLANE U.S. NAVY by CNB