Date & Time: Nov 30, 1970 at 0255 LT
Type of aircraft:
Tel Aviv – Frankfurt – New York
Crew on board:
Pax on board:
Captain / Total hours on type:
During the takeoff roll from runway 30 at Tel Aviv-Lod Airport by night, just before V1 speed, the crew saw an Israel Air Force Boeing KC-97G Stratotanker that was towed across the active runway. The pilot-in-command initiated an immediate takeoff when the left wing struck the Stratotanker. On impact, both airplanes caught fire and exploded. While all three crew members on board the 707 survived, both technicians on board the KC-97 were killed.
It was determined that ATC cleared the mechanics of KC-97 to cross the active runway when they had just allowed the TWA crew to take off from the same runway. It was determined that the time elapsed between both clearances was too short and that ATC failed to pay sufficient attention to potential traffic. Lack of coordination and poor visibility due to the night were considered as contributing factors.