On Aug 12th the morning, bereaved relatives climbed to the crash site on a ridge atop Mt Osutaka, at a height of 1,565 meters, where the JAL Boeing 747 with 524 people aboard crashed on a flight from Tokyo to Osaka. Only four survivors were found when the rescue workers arrived.
JAL President Yoshiharu Ueki joined the relatives in climbing the trail in the afternoon. He paid his respects to victims and pledged that his company would do its utmost make sure such a tragedy never happened again.
JAL Flight 123 took off from Tokyo’s Haneda Airport at 6:12 p.m. on Aug 12, 1985. Twelve minutes later, a rupture in the plane’s rear pressure bulkhead led to its vertical stabilizer being blown off, destroying its hydraulics and rendering it uncontrollable. With a total loss of hydraulic pressure, the captain attempted unsuccessfully to regain control of the aircraft as it descended with the condition known as the “Dutch roll.” At 6:56 p.m., the plane crashed into the mountain.
In 1988, local police served papers on 20 people from JAL, the transport ministry and Boeing on suspicion of professional negligence resulting in death and injury. But prosecutors decided not to indict anyone.