Air wing wraps up night landing practice early
ATSUGI NAVAL AIR FACILITY, Japan — Carrier Air Wing FIVE pilots scrapped their night landing practice at Atsugi this week not because the weather was bad — but because it was good.
A certain number of landings are required of each pilot, said Atsugi spokesman Brian Naranjo. The practice began last week on the island of Iwo Jima — and also wrapped up there, when the weather stayed good.
“Generally speaking, the weather doesn’t cooperate,” Naranjo said, but “they were able to get more done at Iwo than they anticipated, which resulted in them not having to do the night landing practices at Atsugi this time.”
Air wing officials also attributed speedy completion of the NLPs to “having no unforeseen mechanical problems, and the pilots already being pretty proficient, having come back from a recent deployment,” Naranjo said.
“Atsugi is a part of the regular scenario for the night landing practices,” he said. “It’s here for the support of the fleet and part of that support is providing air facilities for the wing to land and take off ... the training is absolutely essential.”
Naranjo said that the required practice was able to be completed at Iwo Jima also “is a testament to the skills of the pilots.”