• Staff Writer

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The number of aviation accidents and serious mishaps in Japan reached 36 this year, marking a record-high in the past decade, NHK reported Monday, citing data compiled by the Japan Transport Safety Board.

In April at Hiroshima airport, a jetliner operated by South Korea’s Asiana Airlines ripped through a communications gantry while attempting to land and injured more than 20 passengers.

In July, a Piper PA-46 propeller aircraft crashed into homes near Chofu airport in suburban Tokyo, killing three people.

The number of cases classified by aviation accidents came to 27 in 2015, while the remaining nine cases were categorized as serious trouble, according to NHK.

In June, an Air Self-Defense Force helicopter was involved in a severe breach of runway safety at Naha Airport in Okinawa when it suddenly crossed in front of a passenger jet just about to take off.

In April at Tokushima airport, a mistake by a traffic controller resulted in allowing ground vehicles to operate on a runway despite an approaching passenger jet.

The 36 cases mark a major increase from the 21 logged in 2014, and the highest in the last 10 years, NHK said, quoting the transport safety board.

More than half of the incidents involved privately operated small aircraft, NHK said.

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