, C-141 Tail Number: 66-0127 C141HEAVEN - All there is to know, and lots more, about the Lockheed C141 Starlifter!

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C-141 Tail Number:66-0127

Al Mirabella sent in this photo with this comment:

"I was going through my photos and found a picture of 66-0127's tail. At that time we were using nose docks for maintenance. The C-124 hangers were being retrofitted to allow C141's to use them. This picture was taken in February of 1967."

This aircraft crashed at Cam Rahn Bay, Viet Nam, on 12 April 1967.

An omitted checklist item caused the spoilers to deploy to the 'Ground' position during takeoff roll. The aircraft became briefy airborne before crashing into the sea. Seven crewmembers were killed. A pilot in the outboard ACM seat and a loadmaster survived.

The plane had flown from Yokota AB, Japan, to Cam Rahn Bay. After offloading cargo, the crew prepared for a night departure back to Yokota. During completion of the Before Takeeoff Checklist, on taxi out, the copilot inadvertently left the automatic Spoiler Select Switch in the 'Autoland' position, instead of the 'Rejected Takeoff' (RTO) position. Un-noticed by the crew, between 34-60 Knots, the spoilers automatically deployed to the ground position. The crew noticed a reduced acceleration rate, but elected to continue the takeoff.

The aircraft became airborne, accelerated poorly, began a shallow descent, and crashed into the sea just off the end of the runway.

The Aircraft Commander had earned a Distinguished Flying Cross 18 months earlier, for safely landing a C-124, after one of the engines had fallen off!

As a result of this accident, the Takeoff Warning system was wired to include the Spoiler Select Switch, and the auto spoilers were eventually disabled entirely.

This information was provided by Paul Hansen.

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