KADENA AIR BASE, Okinawa — The Okinawa prefectural government took water samples from three different locations near Kadena this week to test after a minor fuel leak on the air base late last month.
Kadena spokeswoman Maj. Dani Johnson said officials also are considering a government request made late Wednesday afternoon to collect soil samples for testing.
Although Kadena officials have said the spill was contained to a small area far within the base’s boundaries and presented no danger, the government is testing the water to assuage concerns of surrounding communities, according to Keijiro Yokota, chief engineer for the government’s environmental preservation division.
“The sample water had no smell of fuel,” he said.
Japan’s Defense Facilities Administration Bureau already has been on base to check out the spill site, where about 2,300 gallons of jet fuel leaked from an aircraft fuel storage tank onto the northwest side of the runway, Air Force officials said.
The leak, which happened sometime between May 25 and 28 during a non-flying period, went undetected until the morning of May 29, when it was discovered by a service technician. The tank and pump station are unattended.
Kadena officials continue to investigate the cause of the leak, which was through the tank’s overflow venting system.
The base will clean up the area by removing and replacing the soil around the spill. The contaminated soil then will be purified at a paved location on base.
Yokota said the results of the water test will be available in seven to 10 days.