At around 11 p.m. on Sept. 26, a car with four foreign passengers aged 16 to 19 collided with a car driven by Shigeo Shiroto, 49, a teacher in Shirahamamichi, Shiroganemachi, Hachinohe City, on a municipal road (commonly known as Hamakaido) at 1-chome, Toyosakae, Oirase Town, Aomori Prefecture. Four people were taken to a hospital in Hachinohe City and one to a hospital in Oirase Town. A foreign man died, and the four others involved in the accident were seriously injured.
According to the Misawa police, the foreigners are friends and dependent family members of U.S. military service members stationed at the U.S. forces Misawa base. They all live on the base.
The deceased is an 18-year-old unemployed male. He was transported to the hospital in an unconscious state and pronounced dead about 1 hour and 40 minutes later. The cause of death was an injury to the head and other injuries.
The three other foreigners are a 17-year-old male high school student, a 19-year-old unemployed man, and a 16-year-old female high school student. All suffered brain contusions and other serious injuries.
The male teacher suffered serious injuries including a vertebral compression fracture.
The accident site is a gentle curb on a two-lane road. The road surface was wet from rain at the time. The four foreigners’ car ran off the road and was wrecked. The teacher’s car went up in flames.
In addition to the car parts, daily necessities and shoes that were apparently in the cars were scattered around the scene. Shortly after midnight on Sept. 27, U.S. military personnel arrived and made a detailed inspection of the foreigners’ vehicle.
The Misawa police cordoned off the accident scene until about 11:20 a.m. on the same day in order to investigate and remove the wrecked cars.
According to the Misawa police, there were no noticeable brake marks on the road at the scene. The police are trying to determine who was driving the foreigners’ car, the direction in which the two cars were heading, how the accident occurred, and its cause.
(While Too Nippo published the names of the military dependents in phonetic characters, JMH redacted these as the four individuals are minors.)