AF, Marine jets diverted due to brief Kadena runway closure
CAMP FOSTER, Okinawa — Air Force and Marine Corps aircraft made unscheduled landings at Marine Corps Air Station Futenma on Tuesday due to a temporary closure of Kadena Air Base’s runways.
The aircraft consisted of F/A-18 Hornets, F-16 Falcons and F-15 Eagles, a Marine Corps press release stated. The release didn’t contain any information on why Kadena’s runways were closed.
Lt. Col. Mike Paoli, the 18th Wing’s public affairs chief, said the planes diverted from the Air Force base after an E-3 AWACS aircraft made a precautionary landing at 10 a.m.
“One of our two runways was closed for construction work and the second closed when a hydraulic light on the E-3 came on and it made a precautionary landing,” Paoli said. “That forced other military aircraft usually recovered here to recover at Futenma, which is a pre-planned diversion location.”
He said the E-3 landed safely.
The diverted aircraft returned to Kadena later in the day, Paoli said.