U.S. Military Began MV-22 Flight Operations in Okinawa and Mainland Japan

The U.S. military began flight operations of the MV-22 Osprey tilt-rotor aircraft in Okinawa on March 14th after grounding the entire V-22 fleet after a CV-22 crash off the coast of southern Japan in November 2023. The military quietly removed the flight ban without saying why the incident occurred.

The aircraft began operations around 8 a.m. local time, with several Ospreys conducting short training flights.

The U.S. Marine Corps III Marine Expeditionary Force released a statement that said it determined that the “aircraft is safe to fly based on a meticulous and data-driven approach prioritizing flight worthiness and safety.” Furthermore, the statement said that the U.S. military conducted an examination of “risk mitigation controls” to determine when the tiltrotor aircraft can return to operations.

Japanese government officials informed citizens of several prefectures, including Okinawa, of the plan for the resumption of Osprey flights in the country. However, several local residents and local officials near Marine Corps Air Station Futenma had negative reactions to the plan and voiced fears of future crashes.