AFSOC C-130s Return to Service Upon Inspection

Maintainers assigned to the 16th Expeditionary Special Operations Squadron look on as an AC-130W Stinger II prepares for mission at an undisclosed location in support of Operation Inherent Resolve, Southwest Asia, on July 23, 2018. Air Force photo by SSgt. Keith James.

Two C-130s belonging to Air Force Special Operations Command were inspected for unusual wing joint cracks and returned to service after no defects were discovered, an AFSOC spokeswoman said Aug. 9.

The EC-130J Commando Solo, an information and psychological operations plane, and an AC-130W Stinger II gunship were the only two special-operations platforms that required a closer look as the Air Force checks about one-fourth of all Lockheed Martin C-130s for “rainbow fitting” cracks.

Air Mobility Command calls the breaks “atypical” because they were seen on one aircraft in a spot where they “had not previously been observed on C-130s,” AMC spokeswoman Alexandra Soika said.

She added that one plane in the boneyard that qualifies for an inspection will not be examined.

“At the end of the first day of inspections, 23 aircraft had been inspected,” Soika said Aug. 9. “No defects were found and these aircraft have been returned to service.”

This story has been updated to correct the names of the EC-130J Commando Solo and the AC-130W Stinger II.