Technicians accidentally damaged a small, replaceable component of a Minuteman III ICBM during routine maintenance last month at Minot AFB, N.D., announced Air Force Global Strike Command officials on Tuesday. “Airmen reported the damage immediately to proper authorities in accordance with standard procedures,” according to AFGSC’s statement. There were no injuries in the incident, and an emergency response team determined that there was no threat to public health or safety, said the officials. “The event had very minimal impact on daily operations” and “no impact” on the Air Force’s ability to defend the nation, reads the statement. The component was not affixed to the Minuteman missile, nor was the missile carrying a warhead at the time of the incident, reported Global Security Newswire. Air Force officials have not specified the component. A safety investigation team is now conducting a routine review of the mishap.
Boeing’s receipt of the 10th lot contract award for the KC-46 Pegasus this week leaves just three lots left to complete the Air Force’s buy of the tanker, although a further buy of 75 additional aircraft as a “bridge” to the Next-Generation Aerial-refueling System (NGAS) seems increasingly likely.