Higashi Village’s Osprey and helicopter noise complaints in June outnumber those from last year

September 29, 2016 Ryukyu Shimpo

Within June of this year, the number of noise complaints made to Higashi Village Office concerning MV-22 Osprey vertical takeoff and landing aircraft and helicopters reached about 60. On September 28, it was publicized that these June complaints outnumbered the 56 complaints made to the Office throughout all of 2015.
Six helipads are being built around Takae, Higashi Village as part of a plan to return some of the Northern Training Area to Okinawa. Last year in February in the N4 area of the Northern Training Area, which is in the vicinity of Higashi Village, the U.S. military began using helipads for Osprey training. It is very likely that the spike in noise complaints reflects an intensification of noise damage resulting from the use of these helipads.

On September 28, Kiichiro Jahana, head of the Executive Office of the Governor, answered questions from a representative for the Okinawa Prefectural Assembly, Mitsuru Tamaki, regarding these complaints.

Noise complaints about Osprey and helicopters in Higashi Village numbered 44 in 2012, 37 in 2013, 16 in 2014, and 56 in 2015. In June of this year alone, about 60 complains were made in a single month. This is more than throughout any year in the past four years.

(English translation by T&CT and Erin Jones)

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