Military cargo plane, fighter jet collide near Salton Sea


A military KC-130 cargo plane collided with a fighter jet Tuesday afternoon over Imperial County, according to the United States Marine Corps and the California Highway Patrol.

At about 4 p.m., an F-35B jet made contact with the cargo plane during an air-to-air refueling effort, causing the jet to crash, the Marine Corps said in a statement. The jet’s pilot – its sole occupant – ejected from the craft and is being treated for injuries that are not life threatening, 1st Lt. Brett Vannier said.

The cargo plane made an emergency landing in a nearby farm area and is now at an airport in Thermal. All eight crew members of the cargo plane are safe, Vannier said.

Emergency personnel were on the scene. KYMA-TV reported that there were fires around the site of the crash.


Date:Tuesday 29 September 2020
Time:ca 16:00
Lockheed KC-130J Hercules
Operator:United States Marine Corps
C/n / msn:5565
First flight:
Crew:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 8
Passengers:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 0
Total:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 8
Aircraft damage:Substantial
Location:near Salton City, CA (   United States of America)
Phase:En route (ENR)
Departure airport:?
Destination airport:?

A U.S. Marine Corps Lockheed Martin F-35B Lightning II made contact with a Lockheed KC-130J Hercules (166765) during air-to-air refueling. The F-35B pilot successfully ejected and the aircraft crashed. The KC-130J made a forced gear-up landing in a carrot field near Thermal, California.

The KC-130J was attached to the Marine Aerial Refueler Transport Squadron 352 (VMGR-352) out of MCAS Miramar, California. Photos of the aircraft show substantial damage to the no. 3 and 4 engines; all propeller blades had separated. The refueling pod mounted between engines no.3 and 4 had separated.


Iran details factors involved in the shootdown of Ukraine International Airlines flight PS752

Type: Boeing 737-8KV (WL) Photographer: © Gilles Brion Registration:UR-PSR Date:23 April 2017 Operator:Ukraine International Airlines Taken at: Genève-Cointrin Airport (GVA/LSGG)
Status:Preliminary – official
Date:Wednesday 8 January 2020
Boeing 737-8KV (WL)
Operator:Ukraine International Airlines
C/n / msn:38124/5977
First flight:2016-06-21 (3 years 7 months)
Engines:CFMI CFM56-7B24E
Crew:Fatalities: 9 / Occupants: 9
Passengers:Fatalities: 167 / Occupants: 167
Total:Fatalities: 176 / Occupants: 176
Aircraft damage:Destroyed
Aircraft fate:Written off (damaged beyond repair)
Location:near Sabashahr (   Iran)
Phase:En route (ENR)
Nature:International Scheduled Passenger
Departure airport:Tehran-Imam Khomeini International Airport (IKA/OIIE), Iran
Destination airport:Kiev-Borispol Airport (KBP/UKBB), Ukraine

Ukraine International Airlines flight 752, a Boeing 737-800, crashed near Sabashahr, 7 minutes after takeoff from Tehran Imam Khomeini International Airport, Iran. Al 167 passengers and nine crew members on board were killed.
The Boeing 737-800, registration UR-PSR, had landed on schedule at 00:57 hours local time at Tehran. The return leg back to Kiev was due to depart at 05:15 local time (01:45 UTC).

In the meantime, around 02:15 hours local time in Iran, numerous ballistic missiles were fired from Iran towards U.S. bases in Iraq in response to the killing of Major General Qasem Soleimani by a United States drone strike.
As a result this military operation changed the alertness level of Iran’s air defense. At approximately 04:00 the military sector informed the civil sector of the country’s Airspace Control that only the flights already detected and cleared for flight operations by the defense network could be permitted to start up. This would ensure the correct identification of civil flights by the defense network and avoiding targeting them by mistake.

At 05:49 the doors were closed and the aircraft was ready to depart. Two minuts later the flight requested the to start up the engines.

After contacting the Area Control Center, the ATC unit requested clearance for the Ukrainian flight at 05:52. The Area Control Center forwarded the request for flight PS752 to the Air Defense Coordination Center, which subsequently issued the clearance accordingly.

The aircraft then taxied to runway 29R and commenced the takeoff roll at 06:11. After takeoff the flight contacted Mehrabad Radar and was cleared to climb to FL260 and turn right after reaching 6000 feet, heading direct to the PAROT reporting point.
As the aircraft was climbing after departure, it appeared on the air defense system. However, a wrong initialisation procedure of the system’s north alignment had induced a 107-degree error in the system. Thus, the direction of objects and targets detected by this system was being observed with an increase of 107 degrees by the operator.
At 06:13:56, the air defense unit operator detected a target at his 250-degree azimuth, flying on a 52-degree course. At the same time, PS752 had been flying towards the defense system from a 143-degree azimuth. The aircraft was flying a 309-degree course.

At 06:14:21, the operator notified the specifications of the detected target to the Coordination Center over the communication network. The notification was not communicated successfully.

Meanwhile the system operator began analyzing the observable information and categorized the detected target as a threat. At 06:14:41, without receiving any response from the Coordination Center, the air defense unit operator fired a missile at the threatening target he had detected.

Under the applicable procedures, if the defense system operator cannot establish communication with the Coordination Center and does not receive the fire command, they are not authorized to fire.

The missile radio fuse was activated at 06:14:59. At that point flight PS752 was at 8100 feet at a position about 20 km west-northwest of the airport.

After the first missile radio fuse was activated, the air defense unit radar still locked on the target, and the defense system kept detecting and tracking it. By observing the continuity of trajectory of detected target, the second missile was fired at the aircraft by the operator of defense system at 06:15:11.

At 06:45:24, the last communication between the missile and the defense system was recorded in a place close to the aircraft route. After that, the defense system showed a message indicating the strike had failed, with the aircraft clearing from the radar lock-on after some time.

The aircraft turned to the right and about 06:16:11, a fire broke out on the aircraft, which was intensifying. Altitude was lost and at 06:18:23, the aircraft crashed into a playground in Khalajabad near Shahedshahr area, 15 km north of the airport. It disintegrated completely and wreckage was strewn along a 300 m long path.

Accident investigation:

Investigating agency: AAIB Iran 
Status: Investigation ongoing
Accident number: Factual report
Download report: Preliminary report
Classification: Shot down from the ground
Loss of control

METAR Weather report:02:44 UTC / local time:
OIIE 080200Z 28006KT CAVOK M01 / M04 Q1021

Photos of Ukraine International Airlines Boeing 737-8KV (WL) UR-PSR:

Type: Boeing 737-8KV (WL) Photographer: © Arno Janssen; Registration: UR-PSR Date: 25 March 2018 Operator: Ukraine International Airlines Taken at: Düsseldorf International Airport (DUS/EDDL)


IAF men, meteorologists, psychologists to probe Air India Express mishap

air india, plane crash, Kozhikode
A security person stands guard near the mangled remains of an Air India Express flight, en route from Dubai, after it skidded off the runway while landing on Friday night, at Karippur in Kozhikode

Retired officials of the Indian Air Force (IAF) are likely to be roped in to investigate the Air India Express plane crash in Kozhikode – one of the worst air disasters in India in a decade. Air India Express AIX1344 was a repatriation flight under the Vande Bharat programme for Indians stranded overseas amid travel restrictions brought on by the Covid-19 pandemic. 

Senior government officials said while the Aircraft Accident Investigation Bureau (AAIB) will be the regulatory body in charge of the investigation, the government wants external experts to be part of the committee to reinstate public confidence.  Sources aware of the process said the government has zeroed in on four retired and serving officials of the IAF and sought their consent. The Ministry of Civil Aviation has also written to the defence ministry to relieve the officials of their fixed duties during the course of enquiry. 

Business Standard has learnt that among the officials approached are Air Marshall B Suresh, who recently retired as Chief of Western Command, Air Marshall Rajeev Sachdeva, Deputy Chief of Integrated Defence Staff and some officials from the Aviation Research Centre – the air intelligence wing of the government. The government will prefer someone who has experience flying the Boeing 737. The IAF has a few Being 737s in its fleet for ferrying VIPs, including the President of India. “This is the worst air crash in a decade. While AAIB officials have been investigating accidents since 2017, there were no fatalities in those cases. Simultaneously, there is a need to restore public confidence in the investigation, as the aviation industry passes through its worst phase due to Covid-19,” said a government official. Along with IAF officials, the AAIB will also reach out to experienced private sector executives, meteorologists, and aviation psychologists to be part of the probe. 

The regulations of International Civil Aviation Organization mandate that accident investigators have a practical background in aviation as a foundation on which to develop investigation skills. “These can be by working as a professional pilot, an aeronautical engineer or aircraft maintenance engineer. Other specialised areas of aviation that could provide useful experience include management, operations, airworthiness, air traffic services, meteorology, and human factors,” stated the manual on aircraft accident investigation. 

Several people who have been part of serious aircraft accidents in India said looking at the experience of pilots, it is necessary to focus on human factors to determine whether or not there was an error by the pilots. Aircraft Commander Deepak Sathe, a former fighter pilot with the IAF, had 10,000 hours of flying experience on the Boeing 737. Of those, he flew 6,662 hours as commander. Sathe had landed at the challenging airport 27 times, including more than 10 times this year. His co-pilot, 32-year-old Akhilesh Kumar, had experience of 1,728 hours of flying the aircraft.


Pesawat Tempur TNI AU Tergelincir di Madiun Saat Latihan

JAKARTA, – Pesawat tempur milik TNI AU jenis T-50 Golden Eagle dilaporkan tergelincir saat menjalani latihan di Lanud Iswahjudi, Madiun, Jawa Timur, Senin (10/8/2020), pukul 13.00 WIB. “Itu pesawat dalam rangka latihan normal, sehari-hari,” ujar Kepala Dinas Penerangan TNI AU, Marsma TNI Fajar Adriyanto saat dihubungi, Senin (10/8/2020). Fajar menjelaskan, saat kejadian, pesawat tersebut tengah dalam misi latihan yang dipiloti seorang siswa pilot TNI AU bersama salah seorang instruktur.

Ia mengatakan, pesawat tersebut tergelincir setelah pesawat tersebut keluar landasan ketika akan lepas landas. “Nah saat akan take off, keluar landasan, itu siswa (di kokpit depan, siswa pilot TNI AU), belakangnya instruktur,” kata dia. Fajar menambahkan, kedua pilot berhasil menyelamatkan diri setelah keluar dari pesawat tersebut. Hanya saja, keduanya mengalami luka-luka dan saat ini tengah menjalani perawat di rumah sakit. “Sekarang sedang di rawat di rumah sakit, itu prosedur. Nah, ini kita lihat, itu ada luka-luka ringan,” kata Fajar.

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Penulis : Achmad Nasrudin Yahya
Editor : Bayu Galih

Ukraine: Black boxes confirm interference with jet downed in Iran

Iranian forces say they downed the Ukraine International Airlines Boeing 737 jet by mistake [File: Iran Press via AFP]
Iranian forces say they downed the Ukraine International Airlines Boeing 737 jet by mistake [File: Iran Press via AFP]

The transcript from the black boxes from a Ukrainian jet accidentally shot down by Iran on January 8 confirms the fact of illegal interference with the plane, according to Ukraine’s deputy foreign minister.

Yevhenii Yenin’s remarks came on Friday, a day after an international team examining the flight recorders from the jet had completed a preliminary analysis of the data in France.

“Grateful to all partners who helped bring this moment closer. Black boxes from #PS752 were read out and deciphered successfully. The transcript confirmed the fact of illegal interference with the plane,” Yenin wrote on Twitter.

He also said Kyiv was expecting an Iranian delegation to visit Ukraine next week for talks.

Iranian forces say they downed the Ukraine International Airlines Boeing 737 jet after mistaking it for a missile at a time of high tensions with the United States. All 176 people on board were killed.

Ukrainian Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba said this month that it was too soon to blame human error for the shooting down of the airliner and that many questions remained unanswered.

International probe

A team of investigators from the same countries as the victims of the plane crash met this week at France’s Bureau for Enquiry and Analysis for Civil Aviation Safety (BEA), in Paris, to begin extracting the data.

“The download and preliminary data analysis was an important milestone in what must be a thorough and transparent safety investigation,” said Katy Fox, the chair of the Transportation Safety Board (TSB) of Canada, on Thursday.

“The work in Paris is finished, but the investigation is far from over. There are still many key questions that need to be answered,” she said in a statement.

“We have urged Iran to release factual information from the recorders as soon as possible,” Fox said, adding that Iran – which is leading the investigation – has not authorised the TSB to release details.