Pinched from the mil-spotters forum ;
The UK Royal Air Force is investigating the cause of a training incident
involving a Lockheed Martin C-130K tactical transport, which has halted
activities at its Brize Norton air base in Oxfordshire since yesterday.
Aircraft XV304 blocked the runway at the RAF's main transport hub after it
made a wheels-up landing, causing fresh disruption to the UK's "airbridge"
between the base and Afghanistan.
The RAF's joint aircraft recovery team will attempt to move the stranded
Hercules from the runway this afternoon, enabling it to restore normal
operations. The Ministry of Defence says the mishap has caused only "minor
disruption", and that affected flights have been diverted to alternative
Delivered in 1968, XV304 is one of the RAF's remaining 14 operational
C-130Ks. The type is being gradually removed from service, with its
capabilities to be replaced by around 22 Airbus Military A400Ms. No-one was
injured in the landing incident.
Used to transport personnel and equipment to Afghanistan, the UK's airbridge
was also suspended for several days in early April due to the effects of the
ash cloud caused by an Icelandic volcanic eruption.
The 8 May landing incident has exposed a potential weakness in the RAF's
plan to base all of its air transport assets at a single base with only one
runway. Brize Norton is already home to the service's Boeing C-17 airlifters
and Lockheed TriStar and Vickers VC10 tanker/transports, and is now being
prepared to also accommodate its 14 replacement Airbus A330 Future Strategic
The service is also making preparations to move its remaining C-130Ks and 24
C-130Js to Brize Norton from RAF Lyneham in Wiltshire, with the latter base
set for closure.
I know it quotes the 8 May but the original writer must have meant 6 May , yesterday . It seems that quite a few wheels fell off yesterday !