Crash of a Lockheed EC-130Q Hercules near Peak View: 3 killed

Date & Time: Jan 23, 2020 at 1400 LT
Type of aircraft:
Operator:
Registration:
N134CG
Flight Phase:
Flight Type:
Survivors:
No
Schedule:
Richmond - Richmond
MSN:
4904
YOM:
1981
Flight number:
Tanker 134
Country:
Region:
Crew on board:
3
Crew fatalities:
Pax on board:
0
Pax fatalities:
Other fatalities:
Total fatalities:
3
Circumstances:
The airplane departed Richmond Airbase and was conducting fire control operations when contact was lost. Witnesses on the ground reported hearing a loud bang and saw a giant fireball around the time of the crash. ATSB said the fire retardant-laden aircraft, Tanker 134, was assisting with fire suppression efforts when the crash occurred near Peak View, northeast of Cooma. All three crew members were killed.

Crash of a Grumman S-2 Tracker in Générac: 1 killed

Date & Time: Aug 2, 2019 at 1730 LT
Type of aircraft:
Operator:
Registration:
F-ZBAA
Flight Phase:
Flight Type:
Survivors:
No
Schedule:
Nîmes - Nîmes
MSN:
456
YOM:
1958
Flight number:
Pélican 22
Location:
Country:
Region:
Crew on board:
1
Crew fatalities:
Pax on board:
0
Pax fatalities:
Other fatalities:
Total fatalities:
1
Circumstances:
The pilot, sole on board, departed Nîmes-Garons Airbase on a fire fighting mission near Générac, a village located about 6 km southwest of the airbase. While approaching the fire zone at low height, the twin engine airplane struck trees and crashed in a huge explosion. The aircraft was destroyed by impact forces and a post crash fire and the pilot was killed. At the time of the accident, the visibility was reduced due to thick smoke.

Crash of a Lockheed P2V-7 Neptune in Modena: 2 killed

Date & Time: Jun 3, 2012 at 1347 LT
Type of aircraft:
Operator:
Registration:
N14447
Flight Phase:
Flight Type:
Survivors:
No
Schedule:
Cedar City - Cedar City
MSN:
826-8010
YOM:
1959
Flight number:
Tanker 11
Location:
Crew on board:
2
Crew fatalities:
Pax on board:
0
Pax fatalities:
Other fatalities:
Total fatalities:
2
Captain / Total flying hours:
6145
Captain / Total hours on type:
1850.00
Copilot / Total flying hours:
4288
Copilot / Total hours on type:
38
Aircraft flight hours:
12313
Circumstances:
The airplane collided with mountainous terrain while conducting firefighting operations, 20 miles north of Modena, Utah. The airplane was operated by Neptune Aviation Services under contract with the US Forest Service as an exclusive public-use fixed-wing airtanker service contract conducted under the operational control of the Bureau of Land management (BLM). Both pilots were fatally injured. The airplane was destroyed by impact forces and post crash fire. Visual meteorological conditions prevailed, and a company flight plan had been filed. The flight originated in Cedar City, Utah, at 1315. The crew of Tanker 11 consisted of the pilot, copilot, and crew chief. They were based out of Missoula, MT, and had been together as a crew for the previous 3 weeks. Normally, the crews stay together for the entire fire season. Tanker 11 crew had operated out of Reno for the 2 weeks prior to the accident. During fire drop operations the tanker is manned by the pilot and copilot, while the crew chief remains at the fire base as ground personnel. The day before the accident while en route from Reno to Cedar City they performed one retardant drop on the White Rock fire, then landed at Cedar City. The crew departed the Cedar City tanker base and arrived at their hotel in Cedar City around 2230. The following morning, the day of the accident, the crew met at 0815, and rode into the Cedar City tanker base together. Tanker 11 took off at 1214 on its first drop on the White Rock fire, and returned at 1254. The crew shut down the airplane, reloaded the airplane with retardant, and did not take on any fuel. Tanker 11 departed the tanker base at 1307 to conduct its second retardant drop of the day, which was to be in the same location as the first drop. Upon arriving in the Fire Traffic Area (FTA) Tanker 11 followed the lead airplane, a Beech Kingair 90, into the drop zone. The drop zone was located in a shallow valley that was 0.4 miles wide and 350 feet deep. The lead airplane flew a shallow right-hand turn on to final, then dropped to an altitude of 150 feet above the valley floor over the intended drop area. While making the right turn on to final behind the lead plane, Tanker 11's right wing tip collided with terrain that was about 700 feet left of the lead airplane's flight path, which resulted in a rapid right yaw, followed by impact with terrain; a fire ball subsequently erupted. Tanker 11 created a 1,088-foot-long debris field and post impact fire.
Probable cause:
The flight crew's misjudgment of terrain clearance while maneuvering for an aerial application run, which resulted in controlled flight into terrain. Contributing to the accident was the flight crew's failure to follow the lead airplane's track and to effectively compensate for the tailwind condition while maneuvering.
Final Report:

Crash of a Grumman S-2F-1 Tracker in Weott: 1 killed

Date & Time: Oct 7, 1987 at 1055 LT
Type of aircraft:
Operator:
Registration:
N444DF
Flight Phase:
Flight Type:
Survivors:
No
Schedule:
Rohnerville - Rohnerville
MSN:
119
YOM:
1957
Flight number:
Tanker 79
Crew on board:
1
Crew fatalities:
Pax on board:
0
Pax fatalities:
Other fatalities:
Total fatalities:
1
Circumstances:
The aircraft was engaged in a fire fighting mission in the region of Weott, California. While returning to his base at Rohnerville to pick up another load of retardant, the pilot was able to send a brief mayday message when the aircraft crashed. The pilot, sole on board was killed.
Probable cause:
No investigations were conducted by the NTSB.

Crash of a Fairchild C-119G Flying Boxcar in Castle Crags State Park: 3 killed

Date & Time: Sep 16, 1987 at 1730 LT
Operator:
Registration:
N48076
Flight Phase:
Flight Type:
Survivors:
No
Site:
Schedule:
Montague - Redding
MSN:
11005
YOM:
1952
Crew on board:
3
Crew fatalities:
Pax on board:
0
Pax fatalities:
Other fatalities:
Total fatalities:
3
Circumstances:
The Fairchild C-119G airtanker had been dispatched to a fire about six miles west of Castle Crags State Park, California at 17:05 and departed the Siskiyou County Airport, CA (SIY) shortly thereafter. N48076, another airtanker of the same kind, a leadplane, and an air attack arrived at the fire at the same time. Two more airtankers followed shortly thereafter. The leadplane identified the target, the approach and departure routes, indicated the target was at an elevation of 4,500 feet, that the ridge on final approach was to be crossed at 6,600 feet, advised there was no wind, there was good visibility, and that there was no turbulence except a "1.5g bump" going across the head of the fire. The leadplane directed one of the C-119 airtankers to drop first. That airtanker aborted their first run because of excess speed. On the second pass, it crossed the ridge at a different point, permitting a somewhat longer final approach. That drop was a successful one. The run was made through a saddle then down a creek to the fire some two miles down stream with a planned exit down stream into a larger canyon. The leadplane then directed the mishap C-119G airtanker to drop next. The mishap airtanker used the same approach as the first airtanker. The mishap airtanker reached the uphill side of the fire when the crew reported trouble maintaining proper speed and dropped their retardant on the fire. At about the time the pilot dropped the retardant, a structural failure occurred and the right wing separated from the airframe along with the tip of the left wing and the tail booms. The fuselage with both engines and most of the left wing attached encountered terrain impact and burned as a unit.
Source: https://www.fs.usda.gov/managing-land/fire
Probable cause:
In-flight loss of control following the structural failure of the right wing.

Crash of a Lockheed P2V-5F Neptune in the White Sands Missile Range: 2 killed

Date & Time: Sep 10, 1987 at 1530 LT
Type of aircraft:
Registration:
N96271
Flight Phase:
Flight Type:
Survivors:
No
Site:
MSN:
426-5315
YOM:
1954
Crew on board:
2
Crew fatalities:
Pax on board:
0
Pax fatalities:
Other fatalities:
Total fatalities:
2
Circumstances:
At approximately 3:00 p.m. on September 10, 1987, the Army called Black Hills Aviation to suppress a fire started by a FAADS missile. The missile was fired more than two hours before the crash. A P2V aircraft, Forest Service Number N96271 ["Tanker 07"], owned by Black Hills, was dispatched in response to the request for aerial fire suppression. Tanker 07 was piloted by Nathan Kolb and co-piloted by Woodard Miller, employees of Black Hills Aviation who were not Department of Defense personnel. Tanker 07 obtained authorization to enter the missile range's airspace from the missile range air controller. During the flight, Tanker 07 crashed on the missile range and both pilots were killed. The crash site was located approximately fifteen miles into the interior of the missile range, and was inside the testing site for the FAADS Project.
Probable cause:
Following the crash, an attorney from the Army Judge Advocate General's [JAG] Office at the missile range ordered markers to be placed at the crash site, and aerial photographs were taken. At that time, the Army JAG Officer anticipated litigation regarding the crash. Personnel at the missile range contacted the National Transportation Safety Board [NTSB] and the Army Safety Center in Fort Rucker, Alabama, and inquired whether either of these entities wished to investigate the crash. The NTSB replied that it was not interested in investigating, but would do so if specifically requested to do so by the missile range. Neither entity actually investigated the crash. Colonel Gary Epperson of the missile range was appointed to conduct an Army Regulation 15-6 Collateral Investigation into the facts and circumstances of the crash. The scope of the AR 15-6 investigation encompassed only the activities of the Army in regard to the crash of Tanker 07, and did not seek to determine the precise cause of the crash. Colonel Epperson's investigation consisted of viewing the crash scene, meeting with eyewitnesses to the crash, and asking for written statements.
Final Report:

Crash of a Grumman S-2F-1 Tracker near La Roque-d’Anthéron: 1 killed

Date & Time: Jun 13, 1987
Type of aircraft:
Operator:
Registration:
F-ZBEZ
Flight Phase:
Flight Type:
Survivors:
No
Site:
Schedule:
Marseille - Marseille
MSN:
316
YOM:
1957
Flight number:
Pélican 18
Country:
Region:
Crew on board:
1
Crew fatalities:
Pax on board:
0
Pax fatalities:
Other fatalities:
Total fatalities:
1
Circumstances:
The pilot, sole on board, was engaged in a fire fighting mission in the Luberon, north of La Roque-d’Anthéron, Bouches-du-Rhône. While flying at low height, the aircraft struck trees and crashed in a wooded area, bursting into flames. The pilot was killed.

Crash of a Grumman S-2 Tracker in McBride: 1 killed

Date & Time: Aug 15, 1986
Type of aircraft:
Operator:
Registration:
C-GHQY
Flight Phase:
Flight Type:
Survivors:
No
MSN:
035
YOM:
1957
Flight number:
Tanker 62
Country:
Crew on board:
1
Crew fatalities:
Pax on board:
0
Pax fatalities:
Other fatalities:
Total fatalities:
1
Circumstances:
Crashed in unknown circumstances while completing a fire fighting mission. The pilot, sole on board, was killed.

Crash of a Douglas DC-6B near La Jonquera: 4 killed

Date & Time: Jul 19, 1986 at 1130 LT
Type of aircraft:
Operator:
Registration:
F-ZBBU
Flight Phase:
Flight Type:
Survivors:
No
Site:
MSN:
45219
YOM:
1957
Flight number:
Pélican 64
Country:
Region:
Crew on board:
4
Crew fatalities:
Pax on board:
0
Pax fatalities:
Other fatalities:
Total fatalities:
4
Circumstances:
The aircraft was dispatched in a fire fighting mission over the Pyrenees Mountains. After the water was spread over the fire, the crew was trying to gain height when the aircraft struck a rock and crashed on the south slope of the Puig Llobregat (Mt de la Pouge) located northeast of Perthus Pass. The aircraft was destroyed and all four crew members were killed.
Crew:
Jean-Pierre Davenet,
Jacques Ogier,
Jack Le Bel,
Roland Denard.

Crash of a PZL-Mielec AN-2 in Yakutia

Date & Time: Jul 11, 1986 at 1145 LT
Type of aircraft:
Operator:
Registration:
CCCP-70124
Flight Phase:
Flight Type:
Survivors:
Yes
MSN:
1G136-50
YOM:
1972
Country:
Region:
Crew on board:
2
Crew fatalities:
Pax on board:
1
Pax fatalities:
Other fatalities:
Total fatalities:
0
Circumstances:
The single engine aircraft departed Vilyuysk Airport in the morning on a survey mission to prevent forest fire. One hour and 20 minutes after takeoff, the engine failed. The crew attempted an emergency landing when the aircraft crashed in a wooded area, bursting into flames. All three occupants, two pilots and one observer, were uninjured while the aircraft was destroyed by fire. The wreckage was found 195 km southwest of Zhigansk.
Probable cause:
The engine stopped in flight following the failure of the camshaft.