After dumping the fuel tanks into the lake of Ogawara, the jet returned to the base, the Kyodo news agency reported, providing no information on possible victims.
Fishermen said the tanks fell 400 meters (0.2 miles) from one of the fishing vessels on the lake, according to the agency.
Japan-based USAF F-16 fighter jet forced to dump drop tanks into a lake famous for smelt fishing in Aomori prefecture due to engine fire on take-off. Pilot returns to Misawa airbase safely, no fishermen hurthttps://t.co/MfFoNh8QoM— Thoton Akimoto (@Thoton) 20 февраля 2018 г.
Previous year, Pentagon started to relocate its fifth-generation F-35 fighters to the Iwakuni military base in southwestern Japanese prefecture of Yamaguchi. Washington planned to deploy sixteen F-35 jets in Japan, replacing F/A-18 and AV-8 Harrier aircraft.