US Air Force refuelling jet lands safely at British base after disappearing off radar over English Channel

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A US Air Force refuelling aircraft disappeared off the radar over the English Channel last night but has since landed safely in Britain.

The Boeing KC-135R Stratotanker left Amiens in northern France at 0.05am local time (11.05pm BST) and was last reported on a flight tracking website between Dover and Calais 15 minutes later.

It is not yet known why the plane – flying under the code QID72 and based at RAF Mildenhall in Suffolk – fell off the radar at 0.20am.
Despite the confusion the jet landed safely at its base in East Anglia an hour later, the US Air Force confirmed.

A spokesman said the aircraft experienced an in-flight emergency over the Channel.
But he said they are investigating what happened, and why the plane disappeared off radar.

The US Air Force has been using Boeing KC-135R aircraft since the 1950s and were initially purchased to support the bombers of the Strategic Air Command.
In 2013 three US airmen were killed when their military refueling tanker military tanker crashed in the mountains of Kyrgyzstan.
Accident investigators found that a malfunction in the aircraft’s control system caused the fatal crash.

A spokesman for the US Air Force said: ‘A KC-135 Stratotanker with call sign QUID 72 experienced an in-flight emergency at approximately 12:20 a.m. today. It safely returned to RAF Mildenhall at 1:20 a.m. There were no injuries.
‘Safety is paramount to the success of our mission. The Air Force’s stringent safety standards help ensure the well-being of our people and the communities we interact with’.

www.dailymail.co.uk


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