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   Undertoad  Tuesday Jun 18 03:22 PM

6/18/2002: Firefighting C-130 breaks up



The breakup of the C-130 that crashed yesterday was caught by a news team filming on the scene. All three people on board were killed. Probably instantly...

The thing about fighting fire by plane is that the heat and smoke must create enormously difficult conditions for a pilot. The heat apparently creates a lot of unusual turbulence. I think I heard recently that the fires may well create weather changes due to the different new hot air masses floating around.



jaxomlotus  Tuesday Jun 18 03:58 PM

reminds me of the butterfly effect

you know - where a butterfly flaps it wings and a dandelion puff is scattered into the air, flying into the nose of a dog which sneezes and spooks a nearbye cow who starts to run away and the herd thinking there is danger begins to stampede causing an avalanche on the side of the mountain they are on which blocks off the river forming a natural lake on one side and an arid valley on the other. In time the opposing heat and cold airs create weather thunderstorms in the region. All because of a little butterfly. Hey, it could happen.



MaggieL  Tuesday Jun 18 04:36 PM

Hmmph. *That* was special.

Anyway, this work has these guys constantly pulling high-G maneuvers. The C-130 has a *lot* of engine power, and can be made to do some amazing things. This one kinda looks like a wing spar failure, just from being pulled-up sharply one too many times. I'm sure the turbulance doesn't help, and I doubt that the maneuvering speed limitations are really carefully observed when fighting forest fires. These guys are kind of a spritual mix of ambulance drivers and ag pilots.



hairdog  Tuesday Jun 18 04:49 PM

CNN.com had, I think, a video of this crash, but they have become a "subscribe and we'll show you the cool stuff" site, and I don't have the bread or the bandwidth.



lawman  Tuesday Jun 18 06:22 PM

found the video on M$NBC

http://www.msnbc.com/m/v/video_news....=mpv3&0cv=c643



sleemanj  Tuesday Jun 18 08:24 PM

Quote:
Originally posted by hairdog
CNN.com had, I think, a video of this crash, but they have become a "subscribe and we'll show you the cool stuff" site, and I don't have the bread or the bandwidth.
NZ's own TV3 has the best vid of it I could find on the web...

http://www.tv3.co.nz/news/news_info....y_news_video=1


hairdog  Wednesday Jun 19 09:22 AM

Hmmm. The MSNBC site is just showing today's headlines, and the newzealand news link says the video is not available.



Bitman  Wednesday Jun 19 05:24 PM

On the MSNBC site, search down the page for "fire", the link will open a new window with the video.

*Both* wings came off while the plane was in the air, and the fuselage exploded when it hit the ground. My question: If all the fuel and engines are in the wings, why'd the fuselage explode?



MaggieL  Wednesday Jun 19 06:52 PM

Quote:
Originally posted by Bitman
My question: If all the fuel and engines are in the wings, why'd the fuselage explode?
Fuel probably spilled from the tanks into the fuselage as the wings came off. It's also not unknown for C-130s to have aux tanks in the fuselage. There aren't many operational aircraft that have as many different versions flying as the Hercules.


hairdog  Thursday Jun 20 07:53 AM

It probably exploded because it was being filmed. You know, any car that crashes in a movie explodes into a huge fireball. It's part of the unwritten law of movie-making. My friends and I made a Super 8 movie where a GI Joe doll (our stunt double) fell down a hill and burst into gasoline-fueled flames. Kewl.



bartman  Thursday Jun 20 11:12 AM

I flew on a Twin Otter for a summer dropping water on fires some years ago. It's a LOT better than being on the ground. The turbulence is kinda cool after a while, but the pucker factor of coming off a short lake trying to dump flaps while 2500 over gross was what really used to get me.

It is true that the fire makes it's own weather. The rising hot air leaves an area of low pressure which needs to be filled by the surrounding air. The rising air and the area of low create some pretty cool shear.

I'm not familiar with this version of the 130, but it is normal to have fuselage tanks. On the Otter there was 2, front and rear, as well as the outboard and inboard tanks on the wings.



doc  Thursday Jun 20 01:54 PM

I think Maggie-L may be correct about the wing spar failure. I'd heard on one of the television news stories that this was one of the original C130s. The "born on" date of the plane that crashed was something like 1956! The plane was 46 years old!



MaggieL  Thursday Jun 20 02:48 PM

Quote:
Originally posted by doc
I think Maggie-L may be correct about the wing spar failure.
Well, the wings don't come off unless the spars fail (if you don't unbolt them., of course). Since my original posting, we've heard reports that this aircraft had had skin cracks in the top surface of the wings at the fusilage repaired...another sign that the wings had been overstressed. Appaerently inspecting the spars at that time was too expensive, overlooked, or not done thoroughly.

There's *lots* of old military aircraft still flying...B-52s are another case-in-point.


MaggieL  Thursday Jun 20 03:14 PM

Actually, turns out the cracks were in the *bottom* wing surface. Here's the original report.

http://av-info.faa.gov/isdr/LongForm...ocn=98ZZZX1898



doc  Thursday Jun 20 04:47 PM

Oh, I understand that the old planes are still flying. I don't think their are too many B-24, -17 flying extreme flying missions like the C-130 was.

There are tons of older WWII planes at <a href=http://www.commemorativeairforce.org target=_new> the Confederate Air Force</A>. I guess they're now the Commemorative AF...PC strikes again. Check them out if you're ever in South Texas. It's a great museum.



Nic Name  Thursday Jun 20 07:35 PM

I didn't realize the Confederacy had an air force. How the hell did they lose the war?



Sperlock  Saturday Jun 22 06:20 PM

This plane crash happened just a couple of hours from me. Had to take a detour in my travels because they closed the highway due to the fire. There wasn't as much smoke today (barely any, actually) as there was on Tuesday evening. Hopefully that is a good sign.



Urbane Guerrilla  Monday Jul 8 09:56 PM

Quote:
Originally posted by doc
There are tons of older WWII planes at <a href=http://www.commemorativeairforce.org target=_new> the Confederate Air Force</A>. I guess they're now the Commemorative AF...PC strikes again. Check them out if you're ever in South Texas. It's a great museum.
Or in Southern California, at the airport of the pleasant little town of Camarillo (pronounce it in Spanish; it's named after an old-timey rancher by the name of Adolfo Camarillo). They have an F8F, two C-46s, and about one and a half B-25s. Recently, they picked up an F6F and a P-38, moved in from another facility that shut down. In two pieces, they have an A6M2 Zero.


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