MCCONNELL AIR FORCE BASE, Kan. – The McConnell Air Force Base flight line is emptying out today and Saturday, with most of the base’s KC-135R Stratotanker and KC-46A Pegasus aircraft being launched and relocated away from the local area due to forecasted severe weather.

The aircraft, flown by aircrews from the 22nd and 931st Air Refueling Wings, began departing Friday due to a forecast of high winds, hail potential and the possibility of tornadoes for Saturday evening and Sunday morning. The remaining aircraft, undergoing various phases of maintenance, along with a range of flight line vehicles and equipment, are being stored in hangars.

The relocation protects the aircraft from potential damage, preserving mission capability for McConnell Air Force Base to provide worldwide air refueling, airlift and aeromedical evacuation support. While off-station, McConnell aircrews will coordinate training activities with other military units around the country, to perform that training while away from Kansas, and when en route back to Kansas.