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Japan Coast Guard Disposition

(As at February 1, 2024)

jcgGVOne of the pair of Grumman Aerospace G-V Sea Watch aircraft operated by the
Japan Coast Guard
(JCG) from its base at Tokyo International Airport (below)
in flight close to a well-known local landmark.
(Photos: [Top] JCG; [above] JCG via X [formerly Twitter] @JCG_koho) 

What was then the Maritime Safety Agency (MSA)—the service officially became the Japan Coast Guard on April 1, 2000, but the Japanese name (Kaijō Hoanchō) has remained unchanged—commenced operations as an extra-ministerial agency under the transport minister during the Allied Occupation of Japan on May 1, 1948, ‘to protect human lives and property at sea as well as to prevent and control any breaking of the law’.

JCG 70th anniversary logo
2018 thus marked the 70th anniversary of the Japan Coast Guard (JCG), and a specially designed logo (above) was used throughout the year. According to the service’s website, the logo incorporated a ‘7’ that is linked around an image of the globe, centred on Japan, to signify protection and reflect the JCG’s place as a leader in maritime safety not only in Japan but throughout the world. Featuring an arrangement of Japanese plum blossoms that bloom even in harsh circumstances, the ‘0’ reflected the “spirit of justice and benevolence with which the service will push ahead for the next 70 years”.

JCG regions(Map: Los688 via Wikimedia Commons)

Nowadays reporting to the Minister of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism (MLIT) in Kasumigaseki, Tokyo, the senior JCG officer bears the rank of commandant, beneath whom serve a vice commandant for operations and, within the Equipment and Technology Department, a director of the Aircraft Division. Dating back to January 1, 1962, the organization is divided into 11 numbered geographical regions, as shown in the map above, and comprises 15 air stations.

AW139 JCG 70th anniversaryFor the benefit of the spectators aboard the patrol vessel Izu, members of the JCG’s Special Rescue
Team (SRT) display their expertise from a 4th Region AW139. The demonstration formed part of
the 70th anniversary review of the fleet and comprehensive training drills held in
Tokyo Bay in May 2018.
(Photo: Japan Coast Guard)

In February 2024, the Japan Coast Guard was operating 35 fixed-wing aircraft and 62 helicopters*, of six types each, making a total fleet of 97 aircraft. The most recent major type introduction was that of six Dassault Falcon 2000s, the first of which arrived in 2019. The next new aircraft type will be a Subaru 412EPX due for delivery in 2025.

This page ends with a listing of the helicopter-capable ships operated by the JCG.

(*) Includes two AW139s that arrived circa March 2023, only one of which was close to being commissioned in mid-January 2024, and two new S-76Ds that arrived for pre-service checks in September 2023.

1st Region (HQ: Otaru, Hokkaido)
Regional HQ home ports Hakodate and Kushiro, Hokkaido

Based vessels/
Helicopter complements

Souya (PLH 01, Kushiro) S-76C × 1 
Tsugaru (PLH 02, Hakodate) S-76D × 1
Air operations bases Hakodate Airport, Hokkaido S-76D × 2
Kushiro Airport, Hokkaido S-76C/C+ × 2
Sapporo/Shin-Chitose Airport, Hokkaido Dash 8-Q300 × 3

JCG 1st Region Q400 Overwater patrols are the primary task of the JCG’s fleet of Bombardier Q300s (as the service
calls its Dash 8-Q300s). In the case of the 1st Region, such flights can entail operations over
particularly inhospitable waters for the purposes of fishery and environmental protection.
(Photo: 1st Region, Japan Coast Guard
)

S-76D JA913A shows off the pristine condition of its underside paintwork. This aircraft
has been named
Kumataka since its entry into service in March 2015. (See Note.)
(Photo: Koriel via X [formerly Twitter] @FEFE2F801F90FM2)

Assigned Aircraft (9)

S-76C JA909A Sekirei (Wagtail), operated from Souya (PLH 01)
S-76D JA919A Haitaka (Sparrowhawk), operated from Tsugaru (PLH 02)

Q300     JA723A/724A/727B Aowashi (Blue Eagle) 1 to 3                   Shin-Chitose
S-76C    JA6755/JA6904 Shimabukurou (Blakiston’s Owl) 1 and 2              Kushiro
S-76D    JA910A/JA913A Kumataka (Hodgson’s Hawk Eagle) 1 and 2    Hakodate

Note: One of two AW139s imported by Mitsui Bussan circa March 2023, JA980A Kumataka (link) was being test flown mid-January 2024.

(Photo [Sendai, Mar. 2022]: 飛行機・鉄道大好きな人 via X @kimi_boku_anata)

2nd Region (HQ and home port: Shiogama, Miyagi)

Based vessel/
Helicopter complement

Zaō (PLH 05) S-76D × 1
Air operations base Sendai Airport, Miyagi

Beech 350 × 4,
AW139 × 2, Bell 505× 4

Japan Coast Guard Sendai AW139One of the two AW139s based with the 2nd Region at Sendai airport, Miyagi Prefecture.
(Photo: 2nd Region/JCG
)

Commissioned on February 22, 2021, the 2nd Region’s Beech 350 JA871B is a survey aircraft that
utilizes laser technology to measure the depths of shallow waters.
(Photo: 2nd Region/JCG)

Assigned Aircraft (11)

S-76D    JA920A  Umineko (Black-tailed Gull), operated from Zao (PLH 05)

Based at Sendai:
Beech 350           JA861A/865A/866A Hakutaka (White Hawk) 1 to 3  
                            JA871B Aobazuku (Brown Hawk Owl)
AW139               JA965A/JA968A Umisuzume (Auk) 1 and 2
Bell 505              JA181A to JA184A Ooruri (Black-and-white Flycatcher) 1 to 4
                                                                   Miyagi Branch School, JCG Academy

(Photo: JCG via X [formerly Twitter] @JCG_koho)

3rd Region (HQ and home port: Yokohama, Kanagawa)

Based vessels/
Helicopter complements

Shikishima (PLH 31) (Transferred to 10th Region)
Akitsushima (PLH 32) EC225LP × 2
Bukou (PL10)

 

Izu (PL31)

(Deck space only) 

Air operations base Tokyo International (Haneda)

Dash 8-Q300 × 1, G-V × 2,
EC225LP × 2

EC225LP JA689A was used to transport the Special Rescue Team (SRT) members who gave a
demonstration during the marine festival held in Ito, Shizuoka Prefecture, October 2022.

(Photo: TA_KU via X [formerly Twitter] @ta_ku_nkn073)

Following the tragedy that took place at Haneda on January 2, 2024 (see Bulletin Board),
it remains to be seen if Bombardier Q300 JA725A will be joined by a replacement
.
(Photo: Zuri_183 自遊人via X [formerly Twitter] @ Zuri_183)

 EC225LP JCG HanedaA scene inside the 3rd Region’s hangar at Tokyo International Airport at the time of J-HangarSpace’s
visit in November 2016
(link). Undergoing maintenance was the JCG’s fifth Airbus Helicopters
H225 Super Puma JA691A, which prior to the manufacturer’s change of name had been a
Eurocopter EC225LP at the time of its delivery in January the previous year.

Assigned Aircraft (7)

EC225LP   JA689A/JA690A Akitaka (Autumn Hawk)
                                                      operated from Akitsushima (PLH 32)

Based at Haneda:
Q300     JA725A Mizunagi (Shearwater) 2
G-V       JA500A/JA501A Umiwashi (Sea Eagle) 1 and 2
EC225LP   JA691A/JA692A Inuwashi (Golden Eagle) 1 and 2

The 38-strong Special Rescue Team (SRT) stands to attention in front of EC225LP JA692A at
Haneda in September 2023. The occasion was marking the milestone of the 3,000th member
to join the SRT’s ranks since its founding with just five men in October 1975.
(Photo: JCG via X [formerly Twitter] @JCG_koho)

4th Region (HQ and home port: Nagoya, Aichi)

Based vessel/
Helicopter complement

Mizuho (PLH 41) Bell 412EP × 2
Air operations base

Chubu International Airport

AW139 × 2

AW139 JA960ADelivered in 2008 and the first of 18 AgustaWestland AW139 to have entered Japan Coast Guard
service, JA960A
Kamitaka is currently operated by the 4th Region from Chubu Airport.
The flag in the cabin door window indicates that the regional commander is on board. 

4th Region JCG Bell 412Seen here on a visit to Kansai International Airport, Osaka, this Bell 412EP has been assigned to the
4th Region since March 2013. Its deployments on board the
Mizuho commenced the following year.

(Photo [Sept. 2016]: Alec Wilson via Wikimedia Commons)

As the area around the 4th Region’s base includes the Ise Grand Shrine and the uninhabited
island named Kamishima at the entrance to Ise Bay, the name selected in September 2013
ahead of the arrival of its first AW139 combined
kami (divine being) and taka (hawk).
This perpetuated the name given to the unit’s Bell 212s, which had been in service
 from 1991 to March 2013.
(Photo: えぼはち via X [formerly Twitter] @evo_hachi)

Assigned Aircraft (4)

Bell 412EP JA906A/JA6756 Isetaka (Ise Hawk) 1 and 2,
                                                        operated from Mizuho (PLH 41)

AW139 JA960A/964A Kamitaka 1 and 2

(Photo: TINU via X [formerly Twitter] @TINU20522858)

5th Region (HQ and home port: Kobe, Hyogo)

Based vessel/
Helicopter complement

Settsu (PLH 07) S-76D × 1
Air operations base

Kansai International, Osaka

Saab 340B+SAR × 2,
EC225LP × 2

5th Region JCG Super PumaA 5th Region Super Puma helicopter, one of a pair that the Special Security Team (SST), a unit
attached to the Osaka police that specializes in maritime counterterrorism, uses to train for
vertical insertion onto suspect vessels.
(Photo: 5th Region/JCG)

jcgsaab340One of the two specially modified, second-hand Saab 340B turboprops that were added to the JCG
fleet in February 2007, joining two acquired new in 1997. Both of the
 later arrivals fulfill the
search and rescue role from Kansai International Airport.
(Photo: Japan Coast Guard)
 

The image above is designed to draw attention to the YouTube video (whitewing681 channel)
of JA918A landing at Toyama Airport Dec. 2017 (link).

Assigned Aircraft (5)

S-76D    JA918A Shirasagi (White Heron), assigned to Settsu (PLH 07)

S340B   JA953A/JA954A Hayabusa (Peregrine Falcon) 3 and 4
EC225LP   JA687A/JA688A Mimizuku (Eagle Owl) 1 and 2

(Above and below) One of the 5th Region EC225LPs during diver training with the Tosa (PLH 08)
(Photos [posted Nov. 2023]: JCG via X [formerly Twitter] @JCG_koho)

6th Region (HQ: Hiroshima, Hiroshima)

Regional HQ home port

(None)
Air operations base

Hiroshima Airport

AW139 × 2, S-76D

The 6th Region’s sole S-76D during a post-maintenance test flight at Utsunomiya airfield.
(Photo [posted Oct. 2020]: Sawakazuair via X [formerly Twitter] @sawakazuair_139)

Assigned Aircraft (3)

S-76D   JA921B Setotaka (Seto [Inland Sea] Hawk)
AW139  JA962A/JA963A Setowashi (Seto [Inland Sea] Eagle) 1 and 2

The AW139 JA963A overflies Utsunomiya in February 2022. From 2009 to early 2014, both
of the now 6th Region AW139s were primarily based with the 10th Region at Kagoshima as
Manazuru (White-naped Crane) 1 and 2. (Photo: Senda Jet via X [formerly Twitter] @santa463)

7th Region (HQ: Moji, Fukuoka)

Regional HQ home port

Fukuoka, Fukuoka
Based vessel/
Helicopter complement
Yashima (PLH 22) Bell 412EP × 2 
Air operations bases

Fukuoka Airport

Bell 412EP × 2 (when shore-based)

Kitakyushu Airport

Falcon 2000 × 3, Beech 350 × 2,
AW139 × 2, Cessna 172S × 5

JCG AW139 MH966Commissioned in December 2011 as the seventh of the JCG’s 18 AW139s and initially based on the
island of Ishigaki, Okinawa Prefecture, JA966A has been resident with the 7th Region since
March 2013. The aircraft is named
Hamachidori (Plover). (Photo: 7th Region/JCG
)

(Above and below) The two 7th Region Bell 412EPs are named Hanamidori, an alternative
name for the
uguisu (Japanese bush warbler), the official bird of Fukuoka Prefecture
where the aircraft are shore-based.

(Photos, via X [formerly Twitter]: [Top, Utsunomiya, Feb. 2022] 弾丸 @RJTU1901;
[above, Sept. 2022] なぎさ @KatanoNagisa)

Japan Coast Guard Cessna 172SOne of the five Textron Aviation/Cessna Turbo Skyhawk JT-A training aircraft (JCG designation
Cessna 172S) that entered service in March 2018. These were originally based with the
1st Region at Sapporo.
(Photo: 1st Region/JCG)

Assigned Aircraft (12)

Bell 412EP JA6795/JA908A Hanamidori 1 and 2, operated from Yashima (PLH 22), shore-based at Fukuoka

Based at Kitakyushu Airport:
Falcon 2000        JA575A to JA575A Wakataka (Young Hawk) 1 to 3
B350                   JA868A/JA870A Umikamome (Black-tailed Gull) 1 and 2
Cessna 172S        JA391A to 395A Amatsubame (White-rumped Swift) 1 to 5
AW139               JA966A/JA969A Hamachidori (Plover) 1 and 2

All three Kitakyushu-based Falcon 2000s lined up for a visitor tour late in 2022. The JCG’s 7th
Region had received 353 suggestions for a name in December 2019, and in a press release the
following month the winning name
Young Hawk was said to have “captured the
manoeuvrability and highly functional features of the new aircraft”
.
(Photo: スタバニア@珈琲中毒 via X [formerly Twitter] @sutabania)

One of the two 7th Region Beech 350s, seen when undergoing maintenance during the same JCG
station tour, late 2022.
(Photo: スタバニア@珈琲中毒 via X [formerly Twitter] @sutabania)

(Photo [Nankishirahama Airport, Wakayama Prefecture, Apr. 2019]:
むいむい via X [formerly Twitter] @R1ffP1w1ax1b7BA)

8th Region (HQ: Maizuru, Kyoto)

Regional HQ home port

Sakaiminato, Tottori

Based vessel/
Helicopter complement

Daisen (PLH 10) S-76D × 1
Air operations base

JASDF Miho (Yonago Airport), Tottori

Dash 8-Q300 × 2, AW139 × 2

JCG Miho aircraft (2)Two 8th Region stablemates, a Bombardier Q300 and an AW139, formate for the camera’s
benefit on a flight from Miho
. The unusual angle reveals that the Q300 carries the
Japanese for Japan Coast Guard on the inner side of  the e
ngine nacelle.
(Photo [March 2014]: 8th Region/JCG)

JCG Miho S-76Crew preparedness training naturally plays an important part of JCG operations. Here the S-76D
Maizuru, which has since its entry into service in early 2015 also served aboard the patrol ship
Daisen, is used to provide some land-based winch and rappelling practice.
(Photo [July 2015]: 8th Region/JCG)

JCG Miho hangarBack on terra firma, the same AW139 receives some attention in the JCG Miho hangar.
(Photo [June 2016]: 8th Region/JCG) 

Assigned Aircraft (5)

S-76D                  JA914A Maizuru, operated from Daisen (PLH 10)

Based at Miho:
Q300                   JA726A/JA728A Mihotaka (“Miho Hawk”) 1 and 2
AW139               JA961A/JA973A Mihozuru (“Miho Crane”) 1 and 2

In service since April 2015, the 8th Region S-76D’s Maizuru name had been selected the previous
December. As a port city that is home to JMSDF and JCG bases, Maizuru actually takes its name
from the 16th century Tanabe Castle, which was known as
Maizuru (Dancing Crane) Castle.
(Photo [Utsunomiya, Feb. 2022]: 飛行機・鉄道大好きな人 via
X [formerly Twitter] @kimi_boku_anata)

9th Region (HQ and home port: Niigata, Niigata)

Based vessels/
Helicopter complements

Hida (PL 51)  
Echigo (PLH 08)  S-76D × 1
Air operations base Niigata Airport

Beech 350 × 2, AW139 × 3

9th Region MH916The sole S-76D assigned to the 9th Region is operated from the patrol vessel Echigo.
(Photo: Japan Coast Guard)

The 9th Region’s three AW139s provide search and rescue cover along and off the
coasts of three prefectures: Niigata, Toyama and Ishikawa.
 (Photo: [Dec. 2021]: ちぃすけ via X [formerly Twitter] @monomoke2020)

Assigned Aircraft (6)

S-76D    JA916A Misago (Osprey), operated from Echigo (PLH 08)

Based at Niigata:
B350     JA863A/864A Toki (Crested Ibis) 1 and 2
AW139 JA967A, 970A and 978A Raichou (Snow Grouse) 1 to 3

One of the pair of Niigata-based Beech 350s on climb out from its home airport.
(Photo [July 2019]: KJ via X [formerly Twitter] @JA10GR_JA01GP)

(Photo [Niigata, Jan. 2023]: Taka via X [formerly Twitter] @Takasan_139)

10th Region (HQ and home port: Kagoshima, Kagoshima)

Based vessel/
Helicopter complements

Akaishi (PL 52)  
Sagami (PLH 03) S-76D × 1
Shikishima (PLH 31) AS332L1 × 2
Air operations base

Kagoshima Airport

Saab 340B × 2, AW139 × 2

JCG Saab 340(Photo: Japan Coast Guard) 

Cruising above the clouds during its time with the 3rd Region, the Saab 340B-SAR shown above—currently operated by the 10th Region from Kagoshima—provides a good example for an explanation of the markings. The JCG website explains that the logo of a tipped over “S”, which appears on the side of all the organization’s ships and aircraft, denotes “speed, smart and service” in its safety, search and rescue, and survey missions. Italics were chosen for the fuselage titling to express “stability, dynamism and smartness” as well as to convey the JCG’s “dashing and active role in the international community”. The stylized compass rose that appears on the JCG’s flag is also worn on the tails of its aircraft to symbolize the service’s efforts toward maritime safety.

Umimaru

Like the Japanese Police, the JCG regards the aircraft paint scheme more as a uniform and thus its aircraft carry no individual markings other than the names given by bases to a specific type of aircraft. One exception, visible to the left of the Saab 340’s forward fuselage door and shown above, is the harp seal cartoon character Umimaru, which has been carried on aircraft from time to time since its adoption for the JCG’s 50th anniversary in 1998.

10th Region JCG S-76Sharing the name of a local protected species of bird, the Rurikakesu (Lidth’s or Amami Jay),
the 10th Region’s sole S-76D hovers along the runway at Kagoshima Airport. The aircraft is
normally assigned to the
Oosumi. (Photo [Mar. 2015]: 10th Region/JCG)

Derived from two birds of prey—hayabusa (peregrine falcon) and taka (hawk)—the Hayataka
nickname bestowed on the pristine 10th Region Super Puma JA695A has added significance
in that the Hayato (falcon people) were the tribes who in ancient times lived locally
in what is now southern Kyushu.
(Photo: 10th Region/JCG)

(Above and below) Two views of grimy Nabezuru at Kansai International Airport, February 2020.
(Photos: むいむい via X [formerly Twitter] @R1ffP1w1ax1b7BA)

One of the 10th Region’s two veteran AS332L-1s assists in disaster relief operations
at JASDF Wajima Sub-Base, Ishikawa Prefecture, in the aftermath of the Noto
Peninsula Earthquake.
(Photo [Jan. 5, 2024]: 10th Division/JGSDF)

Assigned Aircraft (14)

S-76D    JA912A Rurikakesu (Lidth’s or Amami Jay), operated from Oosumi (PL 202)
AS332L-1           JA6805/JA6806 Umitaka (“Seahawk”),
                                                           operated from Shikishima (PLH 31)
EC225LP            JA693A/JA694A Nabezuru (Hooded Crane),
                                                           operated from Shunkou (PLH 42)
                            JA695A Hayataka operated from Reimei (PLH 33)
                            JA696A Aowashi (“Blue Eagle”), Akatsuki (PLH 34)
H225                   JA698A/JA699A Ootaka (Northern Goshawk), Asanagi (PLH 43)
                            JA700A and JA? Yumiwashi (Yumi[hari] Eagle),
                                                           to be assigned to Yumihari (PLH 44)

Based at Kagoshima:
S340B   JA8951A /8952A Umitsubame (Storm Petrel) 1 and 2
AW139 JA976A/977A Manazuru (White-necked Crane) 1 and 2

(Above) One of the 10th Region “White-necked Cranes” in flight and (below) at rest on the helipad 
near the automated lighthouse on the abandoned island of Gajajima, Kagoshima Prefecture.
Not surprisingly, the JCG bears the responsibility for maintaining the country’s more than

3,000 lighthouses and operates a fleet of vessels specifically in support of the task. In this
case, an emergency repair team was airlifted by helicopter due to adverse sea conditions.

(Photos via X [formerly Twitter]: [Top, July 2021] はちみつ @f4ejk);
[above, Feb. 2022] JCG @JCG_koho)

(Photo: Yonemori Hospital ER, Kagoshima Prefecture, via Facebook)

(Photo [Jan. 2022]: Official髭曇dism via X [formerly Twitter] @foggy_JA8369)

(Photo [May 2019]: かねやん via X [formerly Twitter] @AURIS_414)

11th Region (HQ and home port: Naha and Ishigaki, Okinawa)

Based vessel/
Helicopter complement

 

Naha: Ryūkyū (PLH 09) S-76D × 1
Okinawa (formerly Chikuzen, PLH 06) S-76D × 1
Uruma (formerly Hayato, PLH 04) S-76D × 1
Ishigaki: Asazuki (PLH 35) EC225LP × 1
Air operations bases

Naha Airport

Dash 8-Q300 × 2, Falcon 2000 × 3,
AW139 × 2

Ishigaki Airport, Okinawa Beech 350 × 2, AW139 × 2

(Photo: JCG via X [formerly Twitter] @JCG_koho)

When both Naha-based Q300s were in residence, December 2023.
(Photos: CASTLE41 via X [formerly Twitter] @NRT0324)

Assigned Aircraft (Total: 15)

Shipborne (4):
S-76D    JA911B Shimawashi (“Island Eagle”), operated from Uruma (PLH 04)
               JA915A Okisashiba (Buzzard), Ryuukyuu (PLH 09)
               JA917A Okiajisashi (Great Tern), Okinawa (PLH 06)
EC225LP JA697A Chiyurawashi (Beautiful Eagle), Asazuki (PLH 35)

(Photo: JCG via X [formerly Twitter] @JCG_koho)

JA697A against a sun-dappled Kobe Bay, November 2021 
(Photo: なぎさ via X [formerly Twitter] @KatanoNagisa)

JA917A about to depart Sendai, July 2023.
(Photo: 飛行機・鉄道大好きな人 via X [formerly Twitter] @kimi_boku_anata)

Based at Naha (7):
Falcon 2000        JA572A to JA574A Chiyurataka (Beautiful Hawk) 1 to 3
Q300                   JA720A/721A Shimataka (“Island Hawk”) 1 and 2
AW139               JA974A/975A Okitaka (“Oki[nawa] Hawk”) 1 and 2

AW139 MH974Both of the Naha-based AW139s have been in service there since first commissioned in March 2008.
(Photo [Sept. 2014]: 11th Region/JCG)

Based on Ishigaki (4):
B350     JA862A/867A Kinbato (Common Emerald Dove) 1 and 2
AW139 JA971A/972A Kenmuriwashi (Crested Eagle) 1 and 2

Beech 350 MA867One of the two Beech 350s that, alongside two AW139s, constitute the 11th Region’s aviation
presence on the island of Ishigaki, 410 km
(260 miles) from Naha. An aviation element was 
relocated to the new Ishigaki Airport in March 2013. (Photo: 11th Region/JCG)

Other principal shore-based facilities
Japan Coast Guard Academy Kure, Hiroshima
Japan Coast Guard School Maizuru, Kyoto (1)

(1) Branch schools at Moji, Fukuoka Prefecture and Iwanuma, Miyagi Prefecture

8th Region JCG(Photo: 8th Region/JCG)

Helicopter-Capable Ships of the Japan Coast Guard

JCG Fleet Review 2018 (1)(Above) Tokyo Bay, off Tokyo International Airport, May 20, 2018. Vessels of the Japan Coast Guard in
line astern pass by dignitaries, including Prime Minister Shinzo Abe (furthest from camera), standing
in the place of honour on the
Yashima (PLH 22). This was the second day of the 56th review of the
fleet, in which 37 ships and 15 aircraft participated to mark the JCG’s 70th anniversary.
(Below) The stern and helicopter hangar of the Yashima can be seen on the port side, while the Tosa
(PL 08) is in the van of the convoy on the starboard side. Formerly an annual event held in May, the  
fleet review has had to be cancelled on occasion before, most recently following the Great East Japan
Earthquake of 2011. Its suspension for the past six years, however, had been entirely due to the service’s
heightened level of operations in the seas around Okinawa and the uninhabited, disputed Senkaku Islands
(Pinnacle Islands, Diaoyu to the Chinese). Only the importance of the occasion had dictated that the
fleet review be reinstated on this year’s event calendar.
(Photos: Japan Coast Guard)
JCG Fleet Review 2018 (2)

(1) Patrol Vessels Large with Helicopter (PLH)

 Shikishima-Class (and Reimei-Subclass) Patrol Vessels
 (Fully laden 9,300 tonnes; Super Puma×2 / 110 crew [plus 30 aviation-related personnel])
Name/Bow No. Commissioned  Notes
Shikishima /
PLH 31
Apr. 1992   Launched June 1991. Initially homeported in Yokohama
 (3rd Region) → Kagoshima (10th Region) Mar. 2018
Akitsushima /
PLH 32
Nov. 2013   Launched July 2012, homeported in Yokohama
Reimei / PLH 33 Feb. 2020  Launched Mar. 2019, homeported Kagoshima
Akatsuki / PLH 34 Feb. 2021  Homeported Naha, to Ishigaki Nov. 2021
Asazuki / PLH 35 Nov. 2021  Launched Dec. 2020

ShikishimaCommissioned in April 1992 and transferred from Yokohama to Kagoshima early in 2018, the Shikishima
can accommodate two Super Puma helicopters. A sister vessel, the 
Akitsushima, joined the fleet as
recently as November 2013.
 Shikishima shares her name with an Imperial Japanese Navy battleship
that saw combat in the Russo-Japanese War
(1904–1905). (Photo: 3rd Region/JCG)

 Mizuho-Class Patrol Vessels  /  (Normal load 5,300 tonnes; Bell 412×2 / 130 crew)    
Name/Bow No. Commissioned  Notes
Fusou / PLH 21 Mar. 19, 1986   (Formerly Mizuho)
 Homeported in Nagoya (4th Region)
Yashima / PLH 22 Dec. 1, 1988   Originally assigned to Yokohama → Moji, Fukuoka
 Prefecture (7th Region) Oct. 2013

JCG MizuhoA visiting HH-65 Dolphin from a U.S. Coast Guard cutter sits on the helicopter deck of the old Mizuho
in Nagoya in October 2007. At that time, Japan was hosting a meeting of a six-nation coast guard
forum developed to combat illegal fishing and increase international maritime safety and
security in the Northern Pacific Ocean area.
(Photo: U.S. Coast Guard Pacific Area)

 Mizuho-Class Patrol Vessel / (6,000 tonnes; H225×2 or S-76D×2)
Name/Bow No. Launched  Notes
Mizuho / PLH 41 Nov. 9, 2018  Commissioned Aug. 22, 2019
 Homeported Kagoshima

 

 Shunkō-Class Patrol Vessels / (6,000 tonnes; H225×2 or S-76D×2)
Name/Bow No. Launched  Notes
Shunkou / PLH 42 Mar. 20, 2019  Commissioned Feb. 19, 2020
 All homeported Kagoshima
Asanagi  / PLH 43  June 30, 2022  Commissioned July 6, 2023
Yumihari / PLH 44 Feb. 21, 2023  Commisssioned Nov. 30, 2023
     (Another ship planned for FY2026)

 

 Patrol Vessel   /  (4,070 tonnes; S-76×1 / 71 crew)   
Name/Bow No. Commissioned  Notes
Sōya / PLH 01 Nov. 1978   Homeported in Kushiro (1st Region)

JCG SouyaSeen here making her way through light ice, the Sōya was built against the background of the Japanese
government’s March 1977 decisions to extend the nation’s territorial waters from three to 12 nautical
miles and impose a 200-nautical mile fishing limit. The name of the cape that forms the northernmost
point of mainland Japan in Hokkaido,
Sōya has been a ship’s name since the early 1900s. In this
case, the ship continued the name of Japan’s first Antarctic research vessel, which
was decommissioned in 1978.
(Photo: Japan Coast Guard)

 Tsugaru-Class Patrol Vessels (4,040 tonnes; S-76×1 / 69 crew) 
Name/Bow No. Commissioned  Notes
Tsugaru / PLH 02 Apr. 1979  Homeported in Hakodate (1st Region)
Sagami  / PLH 03 Oct. 1979   Renamed from Oosumi 2022. Kagoshima (10th Region)
Uruma / PLH 04 Mar. 1980  Formerly named UragaHayato,
 now homeported in Naha (11th Region)
 Zaō / PLH 05 Mar. 1983  Shiogama, Miyagi Prefecture (2nd Region)
Okinawa / PLH 06 Sept. 1983  Formerly named Chikuzen,
 now homeported in Naha (11th Region)
Settsu / PLH 07 Sept. 1984  Kobe (5th Region)
Echigo / PLH 08 Feb. 1990  Niigata (9th Region)
Ryuukyuu / PLH 09 Mar. 2000  Naha (11th Region)
Daisen  / PLH 10 Oct. 2001  Originally assigned to Sakaiminato, Tottori Prefecture,
 homeported in Maizuru, Kyoto Prefecture,
 (8th Region) since Mar. 2008

JCG UrumaThe Souya having served essentially as a prototype, Japan built a series of modified, so-called blue water
vessels in her image to police its extended territorial waters. As is the case with its helicopters, JCG
ships are usually given a new name when transferred to a different operating region, and
the
Uruma shown here has twice been relocated. (Photo: 11th Region/JCG)

PLH06 Chikuzen(Above) Commissioned in September 1983 as the fifth of the nine Tsugaru-class patrol vessels, the
Chikuzen rests at her then home port of Hakata (Fukuoka) in February 2011. 
(Photo: tsuna72 via Wikimedia Commons)
(Below) The Chikuzen as she appears today, this time in daylight hours, as the Okinawa.
(Photo: 11th Region, Japan Coast Guard)
PL06 Okinawa
Settsu hangarA glimpse inside the hangar of the Settsu, during a JCG open day at Kobe port in July 2017.
(Photo: Hunini via Wikimedia Commons)

(2) Patrol Vessels Large (PL) / Deck space only (no hangar)

Name/Bow No. Commissioned  Notes
(Oki / PL 01) Sept. 1989   1,500 tonnes, 39 crew.
 Commissioned as Nojima, renamed Oki upon changing home
 port from Yokohama to Sakaiminato in 1997.
 Decommissioned January 2017 and donated to
 Malaysian Maritime Enforcement Agency.
 (See Kunigami class for details of second ship named Oki)

 

 Ojika-Class Patrol Vessels (PL) / (2,000 tonnes, 34 crew)
Name/Bow No. Commissioned  Notes
(Erimo / PL 02) Oct. 1991   Commissioned as Ojika, renamed Erimo upon changing home
 port from Shiogama, Miyagi Prefecture (2nd Region) to
 Kushiro, Hokkaido Prefecture, in 1997. Donated to Malaysian
 Maritime Enforcement Agency 2017.
 (See Kunigami class for details of second ship named Erimo)
Kudaka / PL 03 Oct. 1994   Homeported Naha (11th Region)
Yahiko / PL 04 Oct. 1995  Originally Satsuma (Kagoshima, 10th Region). Now
 homeported Fushiki, Toyama Prefecture (9th Region)
Dejima / PL 05 Nov. 1998  Originally Hakata when homeported at Fukuoka, now
 Nagasaki in same 7th Region
Kurikoma / PL 06 Oct. 1999  Originally Dejima when homeported in Nagasaki, now in
 Shiogama, Miyagi Prefecture (2nd Region) 
Satsuma / PL 07  Kagoshima (10th Region)
Tosa / PL 08 Oct. 2000  Originally Motobu when homeported in Naha (11th Region),
 now Kochi (5th Region)

Tosa 2018A normallly Fukuoka-based AW139 lands on the deck of the Tosa during the JCG’s 70th anniversary
fleet review and training drills, which were held in Tokyo Bay over two days in May 2018.
(Photo: Japan Coast Guard)

 Kunigami-Class Patrol Vessels (PL) / (1,700 tonnes, 42 crew)
Name/Bow No. Commissioned  Notes
Kunisaki / PL 09 Apr. 2012   Originally Kunigami when homeported in Nagagusuku,
 Okinawa Prefecture (11th Region), now in Moji (7th Region)
 Bukō / PL 10  Originally Motobu (11th Region), now in Yokohama (3rd Region)
Taketomi / PL 81* Sept. 2014   
Nagura / PL 82  
Kabira / PL 83 Nov. 2014  
Zampa / PL 84 Feb. 2015  
Tarama / PL 85 Nov. 2015  
Ikema / PL 86  
Irabu / PL 87  
Torashiki / PL 88 Feb. 2016  
Aguna / PL 89  
Izena / PL 90  
Rishiri / PL 11 Oct. 2016   Homeported Wakkanai, Hokkaido Prefecture (1st Region)
Esan / PL 12  Otaru, Hokkaido Prefecture (1st Region)
Motobu / PL 13 Nov. 2016  Naha → Yokohama (3rd Region) Apr. 2018
Yanakuni / PL 14  Ishigaki
Oki / PL 01 Feb. 2017  Sakaiminato, Tottori Prefecture (8th Region)
Erimo / PL 02  Kushiro, Hokkaido Prefecture (1st Region)
Tsuruga / PL 91 May 2020  Homeported Tsuruga, Fukui Prefecture (8th Region)**
Echizen / PL 92 July 2020  Homeported Tsuruga, Fukui Prefceture (8th Region)**
Wakasa / PL 93 Feb. 2023  Homeported Maizuru, Kyoto Prefecture (8th Region)**
* (PL-81 to PL-90 all homeported in Ishigaki, Okinawa Prefecture [11th Region])
** Tasks include protecting nuclear power plants located on Fukui coast from acts of terrorism 

JCG IkemaThe majority of the 18-vessel Kunigami-class fleet, like the Ikema (above) and the Yonakuni (below),
is based in the Okinawa area, where its primary mission is security around the Senkaku Islands. In 
September 2010, in the course of fishery protection duties in the area, 
Yonakuni was involved in 
a collision with a Chinese trawler, which in Japan became known as the Minjinyu 5719 Incident.
 (Photos: 11th Region/JCG)
JCG Yonakuni                                                         

 Miyako-Class Patrol Vessels (PL) / (3,500 tons)
Name/Bow No. Commissioned  Notes
Miyako / PL 201  Feb. 2020  Homeported Miyakojima (11th Region)
Oosumi / PL 202 Apr. 2023  Homeported Kagoshima (10th Region)
Yaeyama / PL 203 (Feb. 2024)  For Ishigaki (11th Region)
     (Thee more planned in FY2025, two in FY2026)

                                                                                                          

 Japan Coast Guard Dedicated Rescue Support Vessel
Name/Bow No. Commissioned  Notes
Izu / PL 31  Sept. 1997  3,500 tonnes, 110 crew
 Homeported in Yokohama (3rd Region)

PL31 IzuAs a result of the Great Hanshin-Awaji Earthquake in 1995, the Izu patrol boat was designed to serve
as a disaster response command post with the added capability of being able to transport
large quantities of relief supplies to the afflicted areas.
(Photo [Yokohama, Apr. 2009]: Toshinbori Baba via Wikimedia Commons)

 Hida-Class Patrol Vessels (PL) / (1,800 tonnes, 30 crew)*
Name/Bow No. Commissioned  Notes
Hida / PL 51 Apr. 2006  Homeported in Niigata (9th Region)
Akaishi / PL 52 Mar. 2008  Kagoshima (10th Region)
Kiso / PL 53  Sakaiminato (8th Region)
 (*) All equipped for helicopter refuelling

PL52 AkaishiThe design of these three vessels was in response to incursions by high-speed spy boats from North Korea
in the late 1990s/early 2000s.
Hida is the name of the northernmost mountain range
in the Japanese Alps.
(Photo: Japan Coast Guard)

 Hateruma-Class Patrol Vessels (PL) / (1,300 tonnes / 30 crew)*
Name/Bow No. Commissioned  Notes
Hateruma / PL 61 Mar. 2008  Homeported in Ishigaki (11th Region)
Ishigaki / PL 62 Feb. 2009   Formerly Hakata
 Homeported in Ishigaki (11th Region)
Kunigami / PL 63  Formerly Yonakuni. Homeported in
 Nagagusuku, Okinawa Prefecture (11th Region)
 Shimokita / PL 64 Mar. 2009  Formerly Motobu
 Homeported Naha (11th Region)
Shiretoko  / PL 65  Formerly Kunigami. Homeported in
 Nagagusuku, Okinawa Prefecture (11th Region)
Shikine / PL 66 Oct. 2009  Homeported Shimoda, Shizuoka Prefecture (3rd Region)
Amagi / PL 67 Mar. 2010  Amami Islands, Kagoshima Prefecture (10th Region)
Suzuka / PL 68  Owase, Mie Prefecture (5th Region)
Koshiki  / PL 69  Kagoshima (10th Region)
 (*) All equipped for helicopter refuelling

JCG ship IshigakiLikewise extensively utilized around the Senkaku Islands, Hateruma-class vessels like the Ishigaki
are capable of a top speed in excess of 30 knots. (Photo: 11th Region/JCG)

 Training Vessels
Name/Bow No. Commissioned  Notes
Kojima / PL 21 Mar. 1993  3,000 tonnes, 118 crew
 Homeported in Kure for use by JCG Academy 
Miura / PL 22 Oct. 1998*  3,000 tonnes, 40–150 crew. Capable of carrying around
 1,000 people in emergencies. Homeported in Maizuru
 (*) Month of completion

KojimaThe Kojima at its berth at Kure port. Providing prospective JCG officers with seagoing experience, the
Kojima regularly conducts extended deployments as part of the JCG Academy’s curriculum. In June
2017, for example, she made a U.S. port visit to Baltimore, Maryland.
(Photo via wikimapia)
 

thomas3crsFour ships head back to the Port of Yokohama after rehearsing for the May 2005 edition of the JCG
fleet review and comprehensive drill. From the lead ship, the four are the
Izu (PL 31),
Yashima (PLH 22)Settsu (PLH 07) and Tsugaru (PLH 02).
(Photo: U.S. Coast Guard/PA1 Amy Thomas)

logors25

Notices

Announcements

JASDF
Air Shows in 2024
Jan. 20  Iruma
          (Cancelled)
Mar. 3  Komaki
Mar. 24  Kumagaya
May 19  Shizuhama
May 26  Miho
June 2  Hofu-Kita
Aug. 25 Matsushima
Sept. 8  Misawa
Sept. 15  Chitose
Sept. 23  Komatsu
Oct. 6  Ashiya
Oct. 27  Hamamatsu
Nov. 3  Iruma
Nov. 17  Gifu
Dec. 8  Hyakuri
Dec.*  Naha
* To be confirmed

Air Shows in 2023
Mar. 5  Komaki
Apr. 2  Kumagaya

May 28  Miho
May 28  Shizuhama
June 3  Nara
               (Open Day)
June 4  Hofu
July 30  Chitose
Aug. 27  Matsushima
Sept. 10  Misawa
Sept. 24  Akita
Oct. 7  Komatsu
Oct. 15  Ashiya
Oct. 29  Hamamatsu
Nov. 12  Gifu
Nov. 26  Tsuiki
Dec. 3  Nyutabaru
Dec. 10  Naha
Dec. 17  Hyakuri

JGSDF
Air Shows in 2024
Jan. 7  Narashino
 (paratroop display)
Apr. 6  Kasuminome
Apr. 6  Utsunomiya
Apr. 13  Somagahara
June 16  Obihiro
June 30  Okadama
June*  Kasumigaura
Oct.*  Tachikawa
* To be confirmed 

Air Shows in 2023

Apr. 8 Somagahara
May 27  Kita-
            Utsunomiya  
June 3  Kasumigaura
June 11  Obihiro
July 2  Okadama

Aug. 5  Kasuminome
Oct. 1   Kisarazu
Oct. 29  Tachikawa

Nov. 4  Akeno

JMSDF
Air Shows in 2024
Apr. 20  Atsugi
  (US Navy/JMSDF)
Apr. 28  Kanoya
May 5  Iwakuni
(Joint Friendship Day)
July 21  Tateyama
July 28  Hachinohe
* To be confirmed 

Air Shows in 2023
Apr. 15  Iwakuni
(Joint Friendship Day)
Apr. 22  Atsugi

Apr. 30  Kanoya
May 28 Omura
July 23  Tateyama
Sept. 2  Maizuru
Sept. 17  Hachinohe
Oct. 1  Ozuki
Oct. 21  Shimofusa
Nov. 18  Tokushima

POSTER GALLERY

JASDF 2022

Chitose


Matsushima

Ashiya

Misawa

Komatsu

 Gifu

 Tsuiki

Hyakuri

JASDF 2019

Komaki 2019 poster
Komaki

air-festa-hohu_img2019rs
Hofu

iruma191103(2)rs
Iruma

JGSDF 2022

 Okadama

narashino1ab2019koukahajimers
Narashino 2019
 (paratroop display)

metabaru191006rs
Metabaru
tachikawa191109rs
Tachikawa

JMSDF 2022


Omura


Komatsushima

Tateyama

Tokushima

Ozuki

ozuki191020rs


Ozuki 2019

oomura190519rs

shimofusa191026rs

(Please note that air show dates are subject to change/cancellation.)

Links

Asian Air Arms

The Aviation Historian

Nabe3’s Aviation Pages

Japanese

Japan Association of Aviation Photo-
graphers
(JAAP)

用廃機ハンターが行く
(Site dedicated to displayed aircraft in Asia)
JASDF
JGSDF
JMSDF

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