It seems that it was a very busy day and a “good ol’ boy” American (Texas-sounding) AF C-130 reserve pilot was in the instrument pattern for landing at Rhein-Main. The conversation went something like this…
Tower: “AF1733, You’re on an eight mile final for 27R. You have a UH-1 three miles ahead of you on final; reduce speed to 130 knots.”
AF1733: “Rog-O, Frankfurt. We’re bringin’ this big bird back to one-hundred and thirty knots fur ya.”
Tower (a few minutes later): “AF33, helicopter traffic at 90 knots now one-and-a-half miles ahead of you; reduce speed further to 110 knots.”
AF1733: “AF thirty-three reinin’ this here bird back further to 110 knots”
Tower: “AF33, you are three miles to touchdown, helicopter traffic now one mile ahead of you; reduce speed to 90 knots”
AF1733 ( sounding a little miffed): “Sir, do you know what the stall speed of this here C-130 is?!”
Tower (without the slightest hesitation): “No, but if you ask your co-pilot, he can probably tell you.”


  1. Reportedly happened in the skies of SEA. An F-4 overtaking a C-130 made a “watch this call” and proceeded to perform a series of rolls. To which the C-130 commander responded, “not bad, but watch this.” and proceeded to fly straight and level for a period of time. The F-4 jock was confused, “Well, when are you going to do something?” “Oh, I’ve already done it. I went to the back and relieved my bladder, then I made a cup of soup in the galley, brought a cup of coffee for the flight engineer and now I’m back in my seat. Your turn now, can you do that?”

  2. 2 questions. 1. Why didn’t ATC tell the Huey to speed up? 2. Why didn’t the C-130 tell ATC to roll the crash vehicles for the impending crash or declare a missed approach and go around?

  3. I’d like to know why the UH-1 was on approach to an active runway… That, firfirst of all, should’ve been avoided if there was fixed wing traffic inbound on final.