Date: 28 Dec 96 14:20:09 From: email@example.com (Louis A. Ramsay) Organization: Netcom References: 1 2
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In <airliners.1996.3086@ohare.Chicago.COM> firstname.lastname@example.org (John van Veen) writes: > >Chris Jardine (email@example.com) wrote: >: >: 1) Would there would be enough energy in a low velocity explosion like >: what would be available from Jet fuel with no help to cause the kind >: of damage that obviously occurred in this case? > >For what it is worth; When the C-141 first came on line in the >mid-sixties, one blew up on the ramp at McChord AFB during >refuelig. There was at least one fatality. The cause was >relating to grounding, or the lack of. I don't believe the C-141 that burned at McChord was being refueled at the time. Upon boarding the aircraft for a training mission, the crew determined the fuel gauges were not reading correctly. A call was made to the Airlift Command Post to report this problem and the crew was told to take the adjoining aircraft (scheduled for a flight to Kelly AFB later that morning) for their training flight. Maintenance would troubleshoot and fix the fuel gauge problem in time for the aircraft to be dispatched as a replacement on the scheduled flight. There was sufficient fuel on the "PT-Bird" (Pilot Training air- craft) for dispatch to Kelly without refueling. During testing of the fuel probes, the center tank exploded. An avionics technician was talking to tower for a radio check; the explosion was heard over the radio and was recorded by the tower voice recorders. I believe there were two fatalities - one airman died at the scene and the second died either on the way to, or just after arriving at, Madigan Army Hospital on Ft. Lewis. As there were no records showing exactly who was onboard the plane when it caught fire, there was a physical roll call held for any and all personnel that would have had any reason to be at, on, or near the aircraft. At the time of the incident, I worked at the Base Weather Station thus being afforded a "ringside" seat and it was disheartening (to say the least) to watch the plane burn while the fire crew could only wet down surrounding aircraft to prevent any spread of the fire. One Sergeant got an award for tying a tug on to the nearest C-141 and towing the plane out of the immediate area. Lou.