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Air Force C-130 crashes while fighting wildfire

An Air Force C-130 crashed will dropping fire retardant on a wildfire in South Dakota. Six crew members were on board the C-130, but no official word on casualties.

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An Air Force cargo plane has crashed while fighting a wildfire in the Black Hills of South Dakota, but there's no official word on death or injuries, authorities said Monday.

The C-130 plane crashed as it was dropping fire retardant Sunday, according to the U.S. Northern Command, the military operation that is responsible for putting the Air Force firefighting planes into service.

David Eaker of the Great Basin Incident Management Team said six people were aboard. No other information has been released, including the plane's home base.

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Fall River County, S.D., sheriff's officials told the Rapid City Journal three crew members were taken to a hospital. Military officials said they could not comment.

A U.S. Forest Service official in Colorado offered sympathy to the crew members' families.

"We grieve your loss this morning along with you," said Jerri Marr, supervisor of the Pike and San Isabel National Forests, where some C-130s were fighting a wildfire last week. She didn't elaborate.

Eight Air Force C-130s can be equipped to drop water or fire retardant. They're flown by Air Force National Guard units at Port Hueneme, Calif., Charlotte, N.C., and Cheyenne, Wyo., and a Reserve unit in Colorado Springs, Colo.


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