Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Air Force tanker involved in Kyrgyzstan crash not from MacDill

TAMPA — A KC-135 refueling tanker that crashed in Kyrgyzstan earlier Friday was not assigned to MacDill Air Force Base, said U.S. Rep. C.W. Bill Young.

Young said an Air Force official briefed him and told him that the aircraft that crashed was assigned to McConnell Air Force Base in Kansas. He said three members of the crew were killed in the crash.

MacDill officials had declined to comment about the crash. MacDill is the home base for 16 KC-135s.

The U.S. Air Mobility Command operates 414 KC-135s, an Eisenhower-era aircraft that the Air Force hopes to phase out over the next several decades. Despite its age, the KC-135 fleet has an excellent safety record with the last crash coming in 1999 in Germany.

The crash site is near the village of Chaldovar, about 100 miles west of the Manas air base. Pieces of the plane, including its tail, lay in a grassy field bordered by mountains; the air was infused with the heavy stench of fuel.

The U.S. base in Kyrgyzstan, called the Transit Center at Manas, said it had no immediate information. The base, which is adjacent to the Manas International Airport outside the Kyrgyz capital of Bishkek, was established in late 2001 to support the international military campaign in Afghanistan.

It functions both as an interim point for troops going into or out of Afghanistan and as a home for the tanker planes that refuel warplanes in flight.

The base has been the subject of a contentious dispute between the United States and its host nation. In 2009, the U.S. reached an agreement with the Kyrgyz government to use it in return for $60 million a year. But the lease runs out in June 2014 and the U.S. government wants to keep it beyond that point to aid in the withdrawal of troops from Afghanistan.

Information from the Associated Press was used in this report.

Air Force tanker involved in Kyrgyzstan crash not from MacDill 05/03/13 [Last modified: Friday, May 3, 2013 12:20pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. 10 sailors missing, 5 hurt in collision of USS John S. McCain

    SINGAPORE — A U.S. Navy guided-missile destroyer collided with a tanker early Monday in waters east of Singapore and the Straits of Malacca, and at least 10 sailors are missing.

    The Navy said five others were hurt.

  2. Pasco County Fire Rescue fighting a two-alarm fire started by an explosion

    Fire

    Two houses are on fire and one victim has been critically burned and taken to a trauma center following an explosion at a home at 8652 Velvet Dr, in Port Richey.

  3. Rays see the Blake Snell they've been waiting for in win over Mariners

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — It was a one-run game Sunday when the Mariners' Robinson Cano singled with one out in the seventh inning, bringing the dangerous Nelson Cruz to the plate.

    Tampa Bay Rays starting pitcher Blake Snell (4) throwing in the third inning of the game between the Seattle Mariners and the Tampa Bay Rays at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla. on Sunday, Aug. 20, 2017.
  4. Bucs counting on better health creating better pass rush

    Bucs

    TAMPA — Ask Bucs coaches about the improved depth and health of their defensive line, and they'll look around for a piece of wood to knock on.

    Retired All-Pro defensive end  Simeon Rice, right, the last Buc to have double-digit sacks in a season,  works with defensive end Ryan Russell, who last season was promoted from the practice squad for the second half of the year as injuries piled up. He is competing for a backup job this year.
  5. Tampa man turns himself in for Sunday hit and run fatality

    Public Safety

    A Tampa man was arrested early Sunday after he struck and killed a pedestrian, left the scene, and then called 911 to turn himself in.