C-5 Cargo Jet Crashes; No Word Yet on 17 People on Board
American Forces Press Service
WASHINGTON, Apr. 3, 2006 An Air Force C-5 Galaxy cargo jet with 17 people on board crashed at 6:30 a.m. EDT today near Dover Air Force Base, Del.
Base officials said no report was available yet on the 17 people's condition. Firefighters, medics and security forces are on the scene.
Television news reports of the crash show the aircraft's tail a distance from the main wreckage, where the fuselage and nose are adjacent but separated.
The last previous C-5 crash was on Aug. 28, 1990, during Operation Desert Shield, when a C-5A crashed after takeoff from Ramstein Air Base, Germany, killing 13 of the 17 on board.
The C-5 stretches almost the length of a football field and stands as high as a six-story building. The cargo compartment is 121 feet long, 19 feet wide and 13 feet high. The Berlin Airlift required 308 aircraft of the C-47 vintage, the military equivalent of the DC-3. Seventeen C-5s could have completed the same operation, according to a fact sheet on Dover Air Force Base's Web site.
A board of Air Force officers will investigate the cause of the accident, officials said.