Yokota hosts displaced passengers
YOKOTA AIR BASE, Japan -- Nearly 200 passengers unexpectedly took up residence at the Samurai Fitness Center here on Aug. 1 after a flight to Kadena Air Base, Japan was delayed by a monsoonal trough passing through Okinawa.
Members of the 374th Force Support Squadron worked in conjunction with the 374th Civil Engineer Squadron to provide lodging for the displaced passengers.
"Mother Nature had a vote on this one and made flight conditions unsafe," said Mission Support Group Commander Col. Scott Maskery. "When on-base lodging and the off-base contract hotels were at max capacity, we decided to prepare an alternate location."
Volunteers set up cots, fans and water coolers inside the Samurai Fitness Center in order to accommodate the passengers. Army and Air Force Exchange Service locations also stayed open an hour late and opened one hour early.
"Our primary focus was on the health and welfare of the stranded passengers, especially the families," Maskery said. "I'm very proud of how well our team used a tried and true 'plan on the shelf,' quickly modified it for the situation, and then executed that plan in less than two hours from the word 'go.'"