Wednesday, February 24, 2010


WHO: C-130 Tail # 60412 Cargo Carrier From The 440th Airlift Command At Pope Air Force Base, North Carolina


WHERE: 10 Kilometers North of Baghdad, Iraq

WHEN: 1222 Hours 27 June 2008

WHY: "Uncommanded Power Loss after takeoff" . . . no shit - I hope it wasn't a COMMANDED power loss. (thanks Mike the Marine - see comments below)

HOW MANY: At least nine that I can count . . . and one Big Iron Bird!

By all accounts this should have been it for everybody on board . . . instead Tail # 60412 dug a 600 yard furrow in the dirt and came to rest intact - all aboard cheated death.

The crew leaves the C-130 after crash landing - it is 1222 hours 27 June 2008.

A hasty perimeter is set up to establish security until help arrives.

The Iraqi Police arrive at the crash scene. Command Sergeant Major Miller meets the Iraqi Police to explain what happened.

THE passengers are evacuated by helicopter. Staying behind are 8th PSYOP Battalion Commander, Colonel Ceroli, LT. Colonel Goldsmith, CSM Miller And . . .

. . . two members of the Asymmetric Warfare Group. They will recover weapons, night vision & other sensitive gear - and await U.S. ground forces

Half of the nose gear that was sheared off at landing.

Other half of the nose gear - this "landing" was beyond engineering limits

Ladder To flight deck in left of frame. Deck is pushed up in the center & split down the middle. The landing was rough.

Close-up of split in the deck. Dust filled the cabin through this split, filled the ship, making it hard to breath or see until emergency exits were opened within a minute of landing.

Wider view of the interior damage - a miracle that anyone survived.

Landing gear forced up into fuselage with doors torn off

Port side emergency exit hatch near flight deck.

Iraqi Police with U.S. advisers were first on the scene. They unloaded for the C-130 crew.

Stryker Infantry Company from U.S. 25th Infantry Division arrives to secure the site.

Preparations are made for transport of personnel, weapons, sensitive items and equipment back to Baghdad.

A Fort Bragg & Pope Air Force Base Aircraft From Which Unit Commander, Colonel Michael Ceroli and his men probably jumped by parachute in training. Never Again will they jump Tail # 60412 - this Hercules is a complete loss.

SGT Washington From The Stryker Company snapped this photo to document the Moment: L-R: 2X Asymmetric Warfare Group Personnel, CSM Miller, LTC Goldsmith, COL Michael Ceroli and C-130 Tail # 60412


  1. I was at Camp Liberty when that happened. It wasn't really 10 clicks north of Baghdad, more like 10 clicks north of the RUNWAY at BIAP, so the pictures are a little misleading - it was pretty close to urban areas. Never heard an official explanation, but the rumor was something along the lines of "uncommanded power loss after takeoff"... to which we all said "Well, no shit - I hope it wasn't a COMMANDED power loss." All the folks in the back walked away and I think they were on another flight out that night, if I recall.

  2. Looks like they landed at too-high of a sink (descent) rate for whatever reason. Those are not nose landing gear on the ground by themselves, those are the left main landing gear struts and tire/wheel assemblies. Nose is a dual-wheel assembly. Centerline keel split the floor of the plane when it hit the ground.
    Ran out of airspeed, ideas and altitude at the same time. Thank the deity of your choice that they all survived the landing. Amazing that they all got out in one piece.

  3. The landing gear that are sheared off in your pictures are both main landing gear, the one with the strut on top clearly shows the brake inside the wheel. The nose gear consists of a piston with two axles all one peice. Great pictures

  4. Question: What happens to the C-130 after all is said and done? Do you know if they salvaged parts off of it and then blew it up or is it still where it landed?

  5. if i'm not mistaken, they took what parts off they could of this one and called EOD in and blew it into pieces and carted them off

  6. For someone who knows a bit more about this incident, the crew of the C-130 was Active Duty, flying this AF Reserve aircraft. The crew had something like 30-60 hours stick time on this model, and then they were deployed. But, like most things in the Air Force, the crew was all given medals. I'm sure THAT covered up something.

  7. That'll kick start your heart for the day.

  8. I've read the accident report. The OAT was 40°C (104°F). just after take off, at 300'AGL the defensive systems alerted the crew of missle launch. The AC put the aircraft in a dive away from the threat and retarded the throttles toward flight idle and then back to max power within less than a half second. All 4 engines basically flamed out with the rapid throttle movement back to max power. When the RPM dropped below 65% they tried to light back off. #1,2,& 4 engines stalled trying to come back on speed. #3 was the only one that came back up on speed. By that time there was no way the aircraft could continue to fly. The crew tried to get the gear down before bellying in. At that OAT and rapid throttle movement, they ran out of airspeed and altitude. On the throttle quadrant it states, "Movement shall not be made in less than one second".

  9. I like all of the comments...I know for sure that it was a mechanical issue. Might want to re-read the mishap report. No cover up at all. BTW they all had plenty of time behind the stick not the time quoted above...all a bunch of urban myths….. and uninformed opinions.

  10. There were a few more photos in the original set. One shows engines removed and a big fireball where the plane was demolished on site.

  11. the wheels and struts on the ground are not from the nose,nose gear has one strut and 2 tires,ones on the grd are prob left main gear

  12. If anyone reads this in the future, the fact is the crew was a relatively inexperienced crew and the pilot did slap the throttles back to idle faster than the manual states. That it was mechanical is a cover-up. After takeoff in a combat environment you don't have the synchrophaser switch on either engine. The crew did it to themselves so you can take your urban legend, legend elsewhere. Sincerely, a Herk engineer

  13. Agree, pictures of nose gear are main mounts
    Herk Mech