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Report details causes of December mid-air collision at Pope

By Air Mobility Command Public Affairs, / Published March 17, 2015

SCOTT AIR FORCE BASE, Ill. (AFNS) -- Air Mobility Command released the results of its accident investigation board (AIB) regarding a Dec. 1, 2014, mid-air collision near Pope Army Airfield and Fort Bragg, North Carolina.

A C-130 Hercules assigned to Air Force Reserve Command's 440th Airlift Wing, and a C-27J assigned to the Army Special Operations Command Flight Company, both at Pope AAF, collided approximately 8 miles south of Mackall AAF. Both aircraft declared emergencies and landed safely, the C-27 at Mackall AAF and the C-130 at Pope AAF. There were no injuries to the eight C-130 crewmembers or the five C-27 crewmembers.

The investigation identified several relevant human factors in the mishap: a breakdown in visual scan resulting in insufficient clearing of the aircraft flight path by both aircrews; both aircrews were over-reliant on Traffic Collision Avoidance Systems to alert them to potential traffic conflicts; and both aircrews exhibited complacency due to the routine nature of the mission profiles, despite the inherent risk associated with night, low-level visual flight rules operations on night vision goggles.

The AIB report is the result of an investigation that included witness testimony; input from technical experts; review of planning, maintenance, and training records; and review for compliance with Air Force directives and guidance.

The full report is available on the Air Mobility Command Freedom of Information Act site.

For more information regarding the AMC AIB, contact Public Affairs at (618) 229-7839. For information on the Army investigation, please contact the Army Special Operations Command at (910) 432-7585.

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