Mondays at 11:00 & 11:30 pm
"Air Tanker Disasters"
A C-130 tanker plane joined the ranks fighting a forest fire blazing
through an area just north of Yosemite National Park. The plane
came in low to the ground trailing a red flow of fire retardant
above tall green pines. Suddenly, the wings broke off. The fuselage
rolled left and spiraled nose first into the ground, exploding in
a ball of flames. As investigators began to gather evidence suspicions
were aroused when another fire fighting aircraft - a PB4Y-2 - crashed
in Colorado under similar circumstances. Was there a connection?
The NTSB grounded all fire retardant dropping aircraft. The similarities
of those crashes prompted the NTSB to reopen its investigation into
the 1994 crash of a C-130A, which, like the others, had been converted
to a firefighting air tanker. Had the same hidden problem brought
down all three planes?