ASN Aircraft accident Boeing KC-135A Stratotanker 63-7990 Abilene-Dyess AFB, TX (DYS)
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Date:Tuesday 31 January 1989
Type:Silhouette image of generic K35A model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Boeing KC-135A Stratotanker
Operator:United States Air Force - USAF
Registration: 63-7990
MSN: 18607/646
First flight: 1963-09-19 (25 years 5 months)
Engines: 4 Pratt & Whitney J57-P
Crew:Fatalities: 7 / Occupants: 7
Passengers:Fatalities: 12 / Occupants: 12
Total:Fatalities: 19 / Occupants: 19
Aircraft damage: Damaged beyond repair
Location:Abilene-Dyess AFB, TX (DYS) (   United States of America)
Phase: Initial climb (ICL)
Departure airport:Abilene-Dyess AFB, TX (DYS/KDYS), United States of America
Destination airport:Honolulu-Hickam AFB, HI (HIK), United States of America
The water-injection system failed during takeoff from Dyess AFB (DYS) runway 16. The airplane barely climbed and the wing clipped a house before the plane crashed. The passengers of the Stratotanker included spouses of military members, retired military members and one child. They were on a non-stop flight to Hawaii with an en route F-16 refueling mission.

Loss of control

» Air Force jet crashes on takeoff, all 19 aboard dead (Valley Independent, 1989-02-01)


photo of Boeing-KC-135A-Stratotanker-63-7990
accident date: 31-01-1989
type: Boeing KC-135A Stratotanker
registration: 63-7990
photo of Boeing-KC-135A-BN-Stratotanker-63-7990
accident date: 31-01-1989
type: Boeing KC-135A-BN Stratotanker
registration: 63-7990

This map shows the airport of departure and the intended destination of the flight. The line between the airports does not display the exact flight path.
Distance from Abilene-Dyess AFB, TX to Honolulu-Hickam AFB, HI as the crow flies is 5783 km (3615 miles).
Accident location: Approximate; accuracy within a few kilometers.

This information is not presented as the Flight Safety Foundation or the Aviation Safety Network’s opinion as to the cause of the accident. It is preliminary and is based on the facts as they are known at this time.
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Boeing C-135

  • 820 built
  • 69th loss
  • 54th fatal accident
  • 9th worst accident
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