June 13, 2011, Oswego, Ill., Boeing B-17G


At about 0947 Central time, the airplane experienced an in-flight fire and performed an emergency landing. One passenger sustained a minor injury. The three crew members and three other passengers were not injured. The airplane was substantially damaged as a result of the fire, which continued after it was on the ground. Visual conditions prevailed.

About six minutes after takeoff, a chase-plane pilot informed the B-17s flight crew they had an in-flight fire and advised executing an emergency landing. The B-17s flight crew reported they smelled smoke and were attempting to locate its source when they received the radio call from the chase-plane pilot. Once they determined the fire was in the left wing, they elected to shut down the number 2 engine and discharge the fire bottles. The crew then performed an emergency landing to a corn field.

The B-17 came to rest near the east end of the corn field. The crew and passengers exited the airplane as the fire persisted. Emergency crews responding to the airplane were hampered by muddy field conditions, and the fire ultimately consumed the fuselage and inboard portion of both wings.


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