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Commercial Formation Flying?  
User currently offlineDOxley From United States of America, joined Oct 2001, 5 posts, RR: 0
Posted (10 years 3 months 1 week 1 day 22 hours ago) and read 2295 times:

On Sunday September 19 at appx. 6:45 p.m. local time, I witnessed what appeared to be two twin engine "commercial" airliners (7X7?) flying in an extremely tight formation, one behind and above the other. This occurred at about 7000' msl (guessing) and about 2 miles NNW of the LAS VOR. The planes were heading West to East. Hopefully this is enough information to help pin down what was going on. I initially suspected midair refueling, but couldn't make out a boom (besides, why would they refuel at such a low altitude over a heavily populated area?) If anyone has any knowledge or ideas about this, I'd love to hear it. Thanks for you time!

5 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineAa717driver From United States of America, joined Feb 2002, 1566 posts, RR: 13
Reply 1, posted (10 years 3 months 1 week 1 day 21 hours ago) and read 2234 times:

KC-135's fly formation occasionally. They could have just been going into the break at Nellis... Big grinTC


FL450, M.85
User currently offlineLimaFoxTango From Antigua and Barbuda, joined Jun 2004, 808 posts, RR: 2
Reply 2, posted (10 years 3 months 1 week 1 day 21 hours ago) and read 2232 times:

Well using your information, if they were roughly at 7000' as you say and 2 miles from a VOR, my guess tells me that they were probably established on a hold over said LAS VOR. Due to where you were standing looking up, it would appear that they are in close formation, but infact, one could be at 7000' and the other at 8000', for example, giving the false impression. That is a common occourance at busy airports/airspaces where traffic is very high.

I remember seeing photos on here recently about 3 SAA aircraft doing a close formation for an audience. One was an A346, the other a 744 and 747SP.

Hope that helps!



You are said to be a good pilot when your take-off's equal your landings.
User currently offlineHlywdCatft From United States of America, joined Jan 2001, 5321 posts, RR: 6
Reply 3, posted (10 years 3 months 1 week 1 day 21 hours ago) and read 2217 times:

I thought you said "twin engine" aircraft? I dont know of any refuelers that are twin engine as of yet until those 767s get approved.

Maybe it was a couple of commercial airliners doing a promo shoot over Las Vegas, you said it was near LAS right?

I am sure you have all seen the pics of the AA aircraft in formation for the AA promo shoots, maybe it was a Southwest promo shoot with a couple of their special painted aircraft.


User currently offlineCLEwatcher From United States of America, joined Feb 2001, 248 posts, RR: 1
Reply 4, posted (10 years 3 months 1 week 22 hours ago) and read 2071 times:

KC-10's, from an angle, could look like a twin engine plane.


-Raymond
User currently offlineTimz From United States of America, joined Sep 1999, 6903 posts, RR: 7
Reply 5, posted (10 years 3 months 1 week 1 hour ago) and read 1965 times:

You've looked for them on http://www4.passur.com/las.html? I don't see them, which suggests they were military all right.

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