One missing as MSDF chopper clips destroyer off Aomori

Kyodo

A Maritime Self-Defense Force officer went missing Sunday after his helicopter hit a destroyer and crashed off Aomori Prefecture with six other crew members on board.

Everyone except the pilot, Lt. Cmdr. Masahiko Miyanaga, 37, was rescued from the ocean and taken to safety, the MSDF said, while a search and rescue operation was launched in conjunction with the Japan Coast Guard.

The SH-60 chopper went down in Mutsu Bay at 11:05 a.m. after hitting the port side of the destroyer Matsuyuki, the MSDF said. It had left the base in Mutsu that morning to see off an MSDF training fleet.