US Navy plane destroyed in Afghan crash; crew OK

mjg407

Well-Known Member
KABUL, Afghanistan – The U.S. military says that a U.S. Navy patrol plane overshot the runway at an airfield in Afghanistan and was destroyed.
A crew member broke an ankle, but the rest of the crew survived the Tuesday crash. The military's statement does not give further details on who was onboard the aircraft.
The statement says a Navy P-3 Orion airplane sustained "serious structural and fire damage" at Bagram Airfield, the main U.S. military base north of Kabul.
Thank God everyone is okay.
 

subpilot

Squawking 7600
Thank goodness everyone is okay.

Now how the hell do you overshoot Bagram Airfield? The runways are 9,852 feet and 11,852 feet long.
 

granlistillo

Well-Known Member
I was in the squadron when that happened, Ranger 26 if I remember correctly. I spent 3 yrs in the sqdn with the AC. Landed in the touchdown zone, but unfortunately on the wrong end. Our skipper was sitting on the radar cabinent, and the 3p was standing behind the ac who was sitting right seat(no seat belts). 3P threw our wide eyed skipper behind the FE as they went off the runway into the boulder field at about 60 kts if I remember. Tore off a wing and exploded. Class A with only one twisted ankle. A friggin miracle.
 

mjg407

Well-Known Member
I was in the squadron when that happened, Ranger 26 if I remember correctly. I spent 3 yrs in the sqdn with the AC. Landed in the touchdown zone, but unfortunately on the wrong end. Our skipper was sitting on the radar cabinent, and the 3p was standing behind the ac who was sitting right seat(no seat belts). 3P threw our wide eyed skipper behind the FE as they went off the runway into the boulder field at about 60 kts if I remember. Tore off a wing and exploded. Class A with only one twisted ankle. A friggin miracle.
 

beechpilot

Well-Known Member
This plane was out of NHZ(Brunswick) and I know a number of people on the base up here, so I'm really glad that everyone is ok.
 

Hacker15e

Dunning–Kruger Observer
Thank goodness everyone is okay.

Now how the hell do you overshoot Bagram Airfield? The runways are 9,852 feet and 11,852 feet long.
The short runway isn't in use, the last time I was there. They call it the "CELS" or something like that and use it for emergencies only. The old Soviet concrete the thing is made of was absolutely coming apart, and they were using part of it at the north end as a taxiway.

As for the long runway, remember that the field elevation at Bagram is near 5,000' MSL. When F-15s come back full of ordnance at that altitude, our "heavyweight" landing distance is usually north of 10,000'. I don't know what normal P-3 landing distances are, but if the guy landed long or with the wind, it's not impossible to imagine rolling off the end.
 

mjg407

Well-Known Member
Well the pilots were an 0-5 and an 0-4. Haven't heard if weather was a factor or not. We operate our P-3s out of a short a strip as 4000'. The Navy minimum is 5000'. However, (and I don't know if it was landing or takeoff, and if all four motors were running), an aborted takeoff at max gross weight can get you a/holes and elbows at a 10K runway.
 

Bumblebee

Commodore
Well the pilots were an 0-5 and an 0-4. Haven't heard if weather was a factor or not. We operate our P-3s out of a short a strip as 4000'. The Navy minimum is 5000'. However, (and I don't know if it was landing or takeoff, and if all four motors were running), an aborted takeoff at max gross weight can get you a/holes and elbows at a 10K runway.
Hey is the photo you posted of this crash?
 

mjg407

Well-Known Member
No photo's yet. Low currency (less than 10 hours in the past 2 months) for the senior guy flying. Here's more, the Commanding Officer was relieved of duty. Which most likely means he must have done something really bad.

Squadron CO fired after P-3 crash in Afghanistan
By Andrew Tilghman - Staff writer
Posted : Friday Oct 24, 2008 16:50:38 EDT
A squadron commander in Afghanistan was fired Friday after the P-3 Orion aircraft he was piloting overshot the runway, crashed and went up in flames three days earlier at Bagram Air Base, Navy officials said.

Cmdr. Llewellyn D. Lewis, 40, was removed as commander of a squadron that deployed under Patrol and Reconnaissance Wing 5, based at Naval Air Station Brunswick, Maine, Navy spokesman Lt. Sean Robertson said.

Several spokesmen declined to identify the squadron, citing operational security. Personnel records show he has been assigned to Special Projects Patrol Squadron 1 since March 2007.

The crash caused serious structural and fire damage to the plane and marked the latest incident for the fleet of troubled maritime patrol and reconnaissance planes. It was a Class A mishap, which includes aircraft that are destroyed or receive more than $1 million in damage.

One crew member suffered a broken ankle, the only injury. Typically, the P-3 flies with an 11-person crew of officers and sailors. The cause of the crash remains under investigation, Navy officials said.

Capt. James Hoke, the patrol wing’s commanding officer, reassigned Lewis and assigned Cmdr. Craig Lee, the squadron’s executive officer, as the temporary commander, Robertson said.

VPU-1 flies a specialized version of the recon plane, the P-3 “Reef Point,” which includes additional long-range cameras and electro-optical sensors, said John Pike, a defense expert and director of GlobalSecurity.org.

During a deployment in Afghanistan, “they are basically looking for Taliban movements and convoys,” Pike said.

The unit is smaller than traditional squadrons, typically having only two or three planes, Pike said.

The crash is the second Class A mishap this year for the P-3. The previous one, in July, was the first in more than 10 years.

The Navy grounded 39 Orions in December — roughly 20 percent of the fleet — citing “structural fatigue” and fears that wing sections could break off in flight. One more P-3 was grounded in March.

In August, the Navy signed contracts for $190 million to buy 17 new outer-wing assembly kits to rehabilitate the grounded aircraft.

In September, Navy officials stepped up the timeline for replacing some of the P-3s. Training for the first ready-to-deploy squadron of Boeing-made P-8A Poseidons, the P-3 replacement, was moved up to early fiscal 2013, nine months before the previous target date.

In the July incident, a Patrol Squadron 1 pilot lost control of a P-3 after an engine surged during a training exercise near NAS Whidbey Island, Wash.

The aircraft dropped 5,500 feet and pulled seven Gs before its pilot regained control less than 200 feet from the ground. The aircraft lost 45 rivets, broke a wing spar and bent its airframe; it landed safely at Whidbey with its crew unharmed.

The Navy has 156 P-3 Orions in service.
 

Stone Cold

Well-Known Member
This is the line I like best:
A crew member broke an ankle, but the rest of the crew survived the Tuesday crash
So, the guy broke an ankle and didn't survive, but the rest did?:confused:

Glad to hear everybody made it out okay...
 

mjg407

Well-Known Member
Yeah, and the Dover C-5M cluster had 2 0-5s and an 0-3 up front. The rank on your shoulder doesn't make you impervious to titanic f* ups.
From what I gather the squadron CO was in the left seat. Recent proficiency is definitely going to be a contributing factor.
 

falconvalley

Absentee Dad of the OOTSK, Runner, Cat Frustrator
How come he was so called "fired" before the completion of the investigation? Wait- why am I asking that?
 

mjg407

Well-Known Member
How come he was so called "fired" before the completion of the investigation? Wait- why am I asking that?
No, you are correct, the Mishap investigation grants privilege, which means nothing found in it can be used against those involved. So if he got relieved that quickly, something must have been drastically wrong, or the article is incorrect and he was just temporally relieved as CO during the investigation. But I don't think when the CO is involved they remove him...

Granstillo did they remove Sid Vicious in the Q-2 crash during the investigation?
 

phoenix 23684

Well-Known Member
I'm here in Afghanistan and basically he came hot and fast and didn't touch down till way past the half way point, past Taxiway C. That's all I know. 5,000 ft elevation is no big deal if you land in the touch down zone. I guess a go-around never came up, but that's just back sit driving.

P.S. I'll have to get a copy of our ATIS here, "small arms fire at the approach end of the runways"
 

mjg407

Well-Known Member
Remarks A-GEAR A-G on S end rqr 30 min PN. CAUTION Ctl explosions and de-mining ops in vcnty of arpt, ATC will advise. Acft opr blw FL210 may experience a loss of rdo and/or radar ctc with Bagram ATC at dist greater than 30 NM. MPN-25 (ASR/PAR) PMI Mon-Fri 1930-2130Z. Hi potential for hydroplanning when rwy sfc is wet. Rwy in advanced state of decay, increased possibility of FOD. Avoid ovft 1/2 mile NE dep end Rwy 03, burn pit will cause inadvertent flare dispersal. tkof obstacle rwy 03 4900' MSL ant , 599' fr DER, 510' leftof cntrln. Lit twr, 120' AGL, Rwy 03 apch end 1,250 ft E of cntrln. Lit twr, 120' AGL, 1,250 ' E of cntrln midfield Rwy 03/21. Poss 1/2 rwy width clsd for const, ctc App for status. Twy H btn twys B and E is 44 ft wide. Acft use inboard eng only to reduce FOD. FUEL Fuel ltd to US Mil only, C-17 acft for follow-on flt only. Trans mil acfr Prior Coord Rqr. LGT Non-std Rwy/Twy lgt. Rwy 03/21 Emerg Afld Lgt System (EALS) consisting of MIRL'sand REIL's with three settings. Ctc RAPCON on initial apch for preferential ints setting. Single setting Lgt-Carmanah 601 solar lgt are co-located with MIRL'sAND REIL's. Twy lgt are solar powered and non-std spaced. MISC Winds are est due to FMQ-13 wind sensors being accurate to within only +/- 4KT. ATC/Wx will not include/relay wind corrections into fcst/phraseology. Therefore aircrews will inc a +/- 4KT accuracy into their decision making process for flying opr. Afld Management DSN 318-231-4411. Comd Post DSN 318-231-4400. ATOC DSN 318-231-2115. All acft use taxi/position lgt dur gnd ops. RSTD Afld is PPR for all acft. Use OAIX form @ http://ramcc.dtic.mil. TAC C-17 or AMDC-130 ctc scheduling. Emerg safe alt within 100NM is 22,600' MSL. If BAF is under attrack, remain at/abv FL250 and/or 15NM till drct by ATC. Do not overfly Wside of arpt blw 1000' AGL. MPN-25 radar ASR/PAR INST proc auth for US CENTAF OPCON acft/AMC/Army in support of OEF, all others must get apvl from their OPCON. TRAN ALERT No ramp svcs avbl. Deploying units bring own fire extinguishers.
 
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