acidradio
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C-130 Fighting Forest Fires In Western SD Crashes

Mon Jul 02, 2012 2:13 am

Just coming up in the news out in the RAP area:

http://rapidcityjournal.com/news/pla...1-862c-570d-add9-9231cb3fe5e5.html

43 minutes ago • Aaron Orlowski Journal staff
(0) Comments

A C-130 plane fighting the White Draw fire "went down" Sunday night, according to the Fall River Sheriff's Office.

A helicopter was able to land near the plane and took three people to Custer to be transported by ambulance to Rapid City Regional Hospital for further medical treatment.


I was out in western SD in MARCH and they were already having grass fires. It is now very hot and dry and I can only imagine what they are fighting now. Fall River County is the southwestern corner of the state of South Dakota.
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KBJCpilot
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RE: C-130 Fighting Forest Fires In Western SD Crashes

Mon Jul 02, 2012 2:44 pm

The C-130 that crashed is from Peterson Air Force Base in COS. It was just activated last week to help fight forest fires in the western United States.

The article said there were 3 survivors but if I'm not mistaken I think they have 5 crewmembers on every flight. If so, that is sad news.
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L-188
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RE: C-130 Fighting Forest Fires In Western SD Crashes

Mon Jul 02, 2012 5:11 pm

Pilot, co-pilot, FE, loadmaster, and probably either a navigatir ir second loadmaster.... Thats unfortunatly is five
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threeifbyair
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RE: C-130 Fighting Forest Fires In Western SD Crashes

Mon Jul 02, 2012 7:07 pm

News reports are now saying the lost aircraft was part of the NC ANG 145th Airlift Wing based in Charlotte, NC (at CLT). Unfortunately, at least one fatality is being reported.

http://abcnews.go.com/US/wireStory/u...ur-colo-blaze-devastation-16692591
 
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135mech
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RE: C-130 Fighting Forest Fires In Western SD Crashes

Mon Jul 02, 2012 7:58 pm

Quoting acidradio (Thread starter):
I was out in western SD in MARCH and they were already having grass fires. It is now very hot and dry and I can only imagine what they are fighting now. Fall River County is the southwestern corner of the state of South Dakota.

I live in Rapid City, it's really sad this year with all of the fires, even west of Bismarck, ND they were having the fires in the fields etc... We did NOT have an actual winter this season, (nothing close to normal amounts of snow/rain) and it's been horrible with fire risks... Colorado was hurting as well, I went over Raton Pass (Colorado/NM border) in January and it was dry and that scared me for this summer... God be with thier families!
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rfields5421
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RE: C-130 Fighting Forest Fires In Western SD Crashes

Mon Jul 02, 2012 8:38 pm

I get dozens of DOD press release e-mails daily - from one that I received today

Quote:
Firefighting C-130s Placed on Operational Hold After Crash

PETERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Colo., July 2, 2012 - In what officials describe as "a prudent measure," all military C-130 aircraft equipped with the Modular Airborne Fire Fighting System have been placed on operational hold after one of the aircraft crashed yesterday.

A MAFFS-equipped C-130 from the North Carolina Air National Guard's 145th Airlift Wing crashed while battling a fire in southwestern South Dakota at about 6:30 p.m. Mountain time yesterday, officials said.

"There were casualties, and our thoughts and prayers go out to those who were injured and those who lost their lives," U.S. Northern Command officials said in a written statement today. "The family members of these airmen are especially on our minds. We will provide further details on the status of the casualties soon."

The cause of the crash has not been determined, and the incident is under investigation, officials said. At the time of the crash, the crew was fighting the White Draw Fire near Edgemont, S.D.

Yesterday's crash was the first in the 40-year history of the MAFFS program, a joint Defense Department and U.S. Forest Service program that provides additional aerial firefighting resources when commercial and private air tankers are no longer able to meet the Forest Service's needs. MAFFS is a self-contained aerial firefighting system owned by the Forest Service that can discharge 3,000 gallons of water or fire retardant in less than five seconds, covering an area a quarter of a mile long by 100 feet wide.

The MAFFS-equipped fleet is spending today getting the crews together to "reflect, reset and review," said Air Force Col. Jerry Champlin, 153rd Air Expeditionary Group commander. "We all need to make sure our crews and planes will be ready to re-engage in the mission safely."

U.S. Forest Service Chief Tom Tidwell said the agency is deeply saddened by this tragic incident. "The agency fully supports the decision by the military to stand down its MAFFS operation to address the needs of personnel and families and ensure the safety of the mission when it resumes," he said. "The agency will continue to allocate available firefighting assets according to the prioritization of incidents."

It is not known when the MAFFS aircraft will resume operations, officials said.
http://www.defense.gov//News/NewsArticle.aspx?ID=116995

[Edited 2012-07-02 13:39:38]
 
canoecarrier
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RE: C-130 Fighting Forest Fires In Western SD Crashes

Mon Jul 02, 2012 9:55 pm

Quoting L-188 (Reply 2):
Pilot, co-pilot, FE, loadmaster, and probably either a navigatir ir second loadmaster.... Thats unfortunatly is five

The latest reports were that there may have been 6 people on board.

edit from previous post:

http://wildfiretoday.com/2012/07/02/update-on-maffs-air-tanker-crash/ has more information about the crash.

"The USFS said there were two survivors and four fatalities. Yesterday Black Hills FOX News reported that the two survivors were picked up by helicopter from the crash site and flown to the Custer airport."

These crews are working hard as private air crews are tasked well beyond what we'd see during a normal fire year. A sad day for MAFFS crews for sure as this may be the first record noted of a military MAFFS air tanker crashing.

[Edited 2012-07-02 15:01:59]
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Galaxy5007
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RE: C-130 Fighting Forest Fires In Western SD Crashes

Mon Jul 02, 2012 11:06 pm

It is believed the aircraft involved is 93-1563.
 
acidradio
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RE: C-130 Fighting Forest Fires In Western SD Crashes

Tue Jul 03, 2012 3:47 am


View Large View Medium
Click here for bigger photo!

Photo © Felix Mayer727

It looks like we only have one photo of this bird. 1993 certification date, C130H, operated by the NC ANG.
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L-188
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RE: C-130 Fighting Forest Fires In Western SD Crashes

Tue Jul 03, 2012 4:43 am

Quoting canoecarrier (Reply 6):
A sad day for MAFFS crews for sure as this may be the first record noted of a military MAFFS air tanker crashing.

I think you are correct.

But by the same token the MAFFS crews don't get the fire time that somebody with one of the commercial support companies get. They only get called out when the commercial operators are used.
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rfields5421
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RE: C-130 Fighting Forest Fires In Western SD Crashes

Tue Jul 03, 2012 12:44 pm

A CNN article this morning says two died in the crash

Quote:
Family members, however, told CNN affiliate WBTV-TV that two members of the crew died in the crash and identified them as Lt. Col. Paul Mikeal and Master Sgt. Robert Cannon.

and identified one suvivor

Quote:
A hospital official at South Dakota's Rapid City Regional Hospital on Monday night said two other members of the crew were critically injured in the crash and identified one as Josh Marlowe.
http://www.cnn.com/2012/07/03/us/wes...ern-wildfires/index.html?hpt=hp_t2

However the Charlotte (NC) Observer says four are believed to have died

http://www.charlotteobserver.com/201...at-least-2-dead-in-crash-of-c.html

The aircraft / crew were based at the Air National Guard base at CLT.

[Edited 2012-07-03 05:46:43]
 
ImperialEagle
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RE: C-130 Fighting Forest Fires In Western SD Crashes

Tue Jul 03, 2012 1:08 pm

Tragic. A very noble cause, fighting wildfires, and also very dangerous.

It is a wonder there are not more tradgidies. Not only the loss in human life, but now they are short another aircraft so desperatly needed.
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Moose135
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RE: C-130 Fighting Forest Fires In Western SD Crashes

Tue Jul 03, 2012 3:36 pm

Quoting Galaxy5007 (Reply 7):
It is believed the aircraft involved is 93-1563.

I happened to catch that bird on a visit to CLT in April...

Rest in Peace

http://www.moose135photography.com/Airplanes/Airliners-and-Airport-Spotting/Charlotte-Douglas-Airport/i-Z4fmXJ8/0/XL/JM2012050393-1563001-XL.jpg
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rfields5421
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RE: C-130 Fighting Forest Fires In Western SD Crashes

Tue Jul 03, 2012 5:10 pm

C-130s will return to fire fighting later today

Quote:
C-130 Crews Resume Firefighting Operations
From a U.S. Northern Command News Release

PETERSON AIR FORCE BASE, Colo., July 3, 2012 – The military’s C-130 Modular Airborne Fire-Fighting System fleet will resume operations today to support the National Interagency Fire Center and its firefighters battling wildfires in several states, U.S. Northern Command officials said.

Operational flying was suspended yesterday to review flying and safety procedures after the July 1 crash of a MAFFS C-130 while fighting South Dakota's White Draw Fire. An official investigation into the crash is ongoing.
http://www.defense.gov/news/newsarticle.aspx?id=117005
 
L-188
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RE: C-130 Fighting Forest Fires In Western SD Crashes

Tue Jul 03, 2012 6:06 pm

A safery stand diwn was not to be unexpexted for thew crews after this.

Still i need to throw a few stones at USFS. Prior to the great 2003 tanker culling they had 33 heavy air tankers under contract. Bow there are nine.

And iMHO they are getting overworked
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canoecarrier
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RE: C-130 Fighting Forest Fires In Western SD Crashes

Tue Jul 03, 2012 8:47 pm

Quoting L-188 (Reply 14):
Still i need to throw a few stones at USFS. Prior to the great 2003 tanker culling they had 33 heavy air tankers under contract. Bow there are nine.

And iMHO they are getting overworked

There was a reason they culled the tanker fleet down in 2004. A significant portion of the heavy air tankers were over 50 years old. The fire season before that they'd lost a C-130A and a PBY the year before that. Both due to fatigue cracks. The C-130 crash was even caught on camera when the wing folded back.

I'm as for the USFS having a decent number of contract air tankers as the next guy that has worked fires or lives in fire country, but the issue is more complex and partially involves the economics of having a fleet of privately operated, modern air tankers that only fly when there are forest fires burning.

I don't disagree that they are being overworked. They are.
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canoecarrier
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RE: C-130 Fighting Forest Fires In Western SD Crashes

Wed Jul 04, 2012 1:52 am

Another thing about USFS firefighting efforts. State and Federal fire services pay for land based crews all fire season long. Sure there are some private crews off reservations paid for by the government, but I think it's ridiculous that the air effort is nearly entirely reliant on WW2 era aircraft run by private air crews/companies. If the USFS would make it easier to certify more modern aircraft for this kind of work at a reasonable price, this wouldn't be a problem. Instead we have planes that are piston driven, paid for, and old doing this work...for the most part.
The beatings will continue until morale improves
 
L-188
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RE: C-130 Fighting Forest Fires In Western SD Crashes

Wed Jul 04, 2012 2:11 am

Quoting canoecarrier (Reply 15):
The fire season before that they'd lost a C-130A and a PBY the year before that.

Actually it was a PB4Y. And the C-130 If I recall correctly used a different stiffer wing then later models. But those aircraft where no younger then the P2V's and S-2's that are currently used, or the CV-580 that the State of Alaska charters in from Conair in Canada. To tell you the truth the P-3 conversion was my first choice for a replacement tanker but because of some congressional hanky-panky in transfering those frames to civilian ownership that program got killed.

Too bad, plenty of frames in the desert and a nice short thick wing.
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rfields5421
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RE: C-130 Fighting Forest Fires In Western SD Crashes

Wed Jul 04, 2012 2:01 pm

Identies of the crewmen

Quote:
NC Guard Identifies Airmen Killed in C-130 Crash

By Army Sgt. 1st Class Tyrone C. Marshall Jr.
American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, July 3, 2012 - North Carolina Air National Guard officials today released the names of four crew members killed when their C-130 cargo plane equipped with the Modular Airborne Fire-Fighting System crashed July 1 as they fought South Dakota's White Draw Fire.

Two other crew members were seriously injured and remain hospitalized, and their names will not be released, officials said.

"Words can't express how much we feel the loss of these airmen," said Air Force Brig. Gen. Tony McMillan, commander of the 145th Airlift Wing. "Our prayers are with their families, as well as our injured brothers as they recover."

Air Force Lt. Col. Paul Mikael, Air Force Maj. Joseph McCormick, Air Force Maj. Ryan David, and Air Force Senior Master Sgt. Robert Cannon died in the crash.

An investigation is under way to determine the cause of the crash.

The crew and its aircraft, along with two other 145th Airlift Wing C-130s and three dozen airmen had flown from Charlotte, N.C., to Peterson Air Force Base in Colorado Springs, Colo., June 30 to assist wildfire fighting efforts in the Rocky Mountain region.

At a news conference at Charlotte-Douglas International Airport, today, where the 145th Airlift Wing is based, the North Carolina Air National Guard's state public affairs officer said the wing's two remaining MAFFS-equipped C-130 aircraft are scheduled to return home.

"The MAFFS operations are ongoing," Air Force Lt. Col. Robert Carver said. "Our aircraft are scheduled to come back home. It's a small community that does the MAFFS mission, a community within the Air Guard community, so these people all knew each other very well, and they're going through a tough time."

Carver praised the service of the fallen airmen and noted their names would be added to a memorial at the unit's headquarters.

"Our people come here out of a sense of patriotism and out of a sense of wanting to be public servants," Carver said. "They enjoy the excitement of doing this kind of work. They were [ready] to go on Saturday ... when they left."

"You can't say enough about people who are willing to go in harm's way when we need it as Americans," he said.
http://www.defense.gov/news/newsarticle.aspx?id=117014
 
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Spacepope
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RE: C-130 Fighting Forest Fires In Western SD Crashes

Wed Jul 04, 2012 2:57 pm

What ever happened to Aerounion and the P-3s?

Before the MAFFS were called in here, the private tankers were all Canadian CV-580s and some AirTractor SEATs, with a K-max and Erickson CH-54 working the fire lines. I counted at least 5 CV-580s from Conair and Saskatchewan.

Next year more BAE-146s should be coming online, and we'll see the introduction of the RJ-85 and MD-87 into the fleets. I think the Neptunes have done a good job, but their time has come.

Still think a Dash-8 would do a hell of a job too.
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rfields5421
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RE: C-130 Fighting Forest Fires In Western SD Crashes

Wed Jul 04, 2012 3:26 pm

Quoting Spacepope (Reply 19):
What ever happened to Aerounion and the P-3s?

Their aircraft were not being inspected and maintained to contract standards and the contract was cancelled about a year ago.

http://anewscafe.com/2011/08/14/aero...ks-after-canceled-forest-contract/

Plus

Quoting L-188 (Reply 17):
To tell you the truth the P-3 conversion was my first choice for a replacement tanker but because of some congressional hanky-panky in transfering those frames to civilian ownership that program got killed.
 
Galaxy5007
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RE: C-130 Fighting Forest Fires In Western SD Crashes

Wed Jul 04, 2012 5:58 pm

Possible aircraft serial correction; I posted earlier that the aircraft involved was 93-1563, however, the jet was picked up by SBS as RCH561 on the 3rd. The other 93 model that was there was 93-1458, which was last shown in Kansas going westbound as EPIC20. Trying to confirm the tail number for you all; hopefully I'll know by tonight.
 
Galaxy5007
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RE: C-130 Fighting Forest Fires In Western SD Crashes

Wed Jul 04, 2012 9:41 pm

Confirmed that the lost aircraft is actually 93-1458. Both aircraft used the MAFF 7 callsign during the day; 1563 used it earlier in the day, and 1458 used it on its final mission.

http://www.airliners.net/photo/USA--...d=24fd27f9dbb7a392ae5393a9297191c9

RIP to the 4 lost and thoughts and prayers to the families of the lost airmen as well as to the two survivors for a speedy recovery.

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