There But For The Grace: Runway Mishaps

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What happens when an Apache tangles with two Trojans (pages 4,5)? Broken airplanes and, we suspect, broken hearts. The T-28s were resting peacefully outside their hangars at Hicks Airfield (T67) near Fort Worth on the afternoon of Jan. 9, but it was the wrong place at the wrong time. The NTSB report says the pilot thought the right engine failed on a Piper Apache just after takeoff, causing the twin to veer off its takeoff path and slam into the old warbirds. The Apache was a write-off, but it's not known if the Trojans can be fixed. There were injuries but no fatalities in the crash. Likewise in another off-runway excursion that cost Uncle Sam tens of millions of dollars earlier this month in England, when an F-15 veered off the runway at 150 knots. According to AVweb's sources, the Eagle, a new, updated E version, blew a tire on landing, headed for the turf -- where it dug in -- and stood on its nose before breaking in half. Amazingly, the pilot had some bumps and bruises, but his weapon system operator broke both arms. They rode the aircraft into the dirt and did not eject. The plane was returning from a deployment to the U.S.