On March 17, three military aircraft whose affiliations are not known were spotted flying at low altitudes at about 11 a.m. over Iida City, Nagano Prefecture, and again at slightly past 11 a.m. over Ina City, which is located in the same prefecture.
Tomoe Miyazaki [spelling not confirmed], a 75-year-old resident of the Ooyasumi district of Iida City, heard an unusual, loud rattling noise while at home. Wondering if it were “some kind of training,” she went outside to check and then saw three military aircraft overhead. She said the wings [of the aircraft] were clearly visible to the naked eye. She also said the aircraft flew from the direction of the Kiso region and circled above the Tenryu River before heading north in the direction of Ina City.
According to a report by a local newspaper, the airplanes are believed to be U.S. military C-130 transport aircraft. In response to Shimbun Akahata’s inquiry, a representative of the North Kanto Defense Bureau of the Ministry of Defense (MOD) said, “We are not aware of the matter.”
The disaster prevention division of the crisis management department of the Nagano Prefectural Government said it had received a total of 14 reports from residents in eight municipalities (Iida City, Ina City, Chino City, Minamiminowa Village, Miyada Village, Komagane City, Takagi Village, and Kiso Town) as of 3 p.m. on March 18.
A military aircraft was also spotted flying over Okaya City at slightly past noon on March 15. (Abridged)