The team of 19 from the Maritime Self-Defence Force — Japan’s navy — was taking part in an exercise in waters off Japan’s southwestern island of Shikoku, a defence ministry spokesman said.
“They were training for landing and taking off on the water in their amphibious plane, when the engine fell off,” he said.
“The right wing was also broken, so they gave up trying to fly it.”
He did not give any details as to how the damage was done.
The crew evacuated to emergency boats and was picked up by passing fishing trawlers.
Four personnel suffered minor injuries, he said. -AFP