On September 9th, 2008 a C-130E (1788) flown by the 189th Airlift Wing, Little Rock AFB experienced a very rare and dangerous loss of power to all four engines as it climbed through 1,000 feet moments after takeoff from Jacksonville, AR. At first, the takeoff was routine but a few seconds into the flight Maj. Dean Martin the pilot of the C-130 noticed that the TCAS was not functioning and shortly thereafter the aircraft experienced what is called a “four engine rollback” where all four engines experience a loss of power and if not corrected within a few seconds, results in a deadly crash. At 1,000 feet the C-130 became a 50-ton glider, thats when flight engineer Master Sgt. Doug McGroarty shifted to mechanical governing, manually controlling the electrical power to the engines and propeller speed. He then turned off the temperature datum system which controlls the amount of fuel to the engines based on the temperature of the engine turbines and took control of fuel flow. Three of the four engines instantly recovered and the pilot made a safe landing. The aircraft was confined to the maintence hanger for 12 days before mechanics discovered that a three phase electrical relay system that partially failed. When the relay failed, the system that regulates fuel fed into the engines based on temperature malfunctioned showing that the engines were overheating, therefore, the safety fuel control kicked in, limiting the amount of fuel being sent to the engines. Maintence crews describe this event as “one in a million”. A similar incident happened in 1996 when an AF reserve C-130 crashed in the pacific ocean due to a four engine rollback, there was only one survivor. The Air Force praises the crew of the C-130 for their actions. All 5 members of the flight crew had an average of 4,800 hours of experience on the aircraft type. This, and the 1996 incident are the only two on record to have had this type of malfunction.
That’s some airmanship!
Give that FE another stripe!
He won’t be buying his own drinks for quite a while I suspect
Hell, give him a medal and promote him to an officer!! Apparently he didn’t fall asleep in FE training.
He’s an old hand at this stuff…