Boeing Investigating Future Air Force One Tequila Bottles

Boeing Investigating Future Air Force One Tequila Bottles

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Two small tequila bottles found on the future Air Force One are causing quite a kerfuffle.

The government is getting new Air Force Ones

Air Force One is the name of the plane that carries the president of the United States, and this has long been a Boeing 747. Currently there are two Boeing 747-200s (which use the code VC-25) that can serve as Air Force One, and they’re each about 30 years old, having been built in 1991.

Air Force One is currently a 747-200

A few years back the United States government reached a deal with Boeing to modernize the Air Force One fleet. Specifically, the planes that will serve as Air Force Ones are previously built 747-8s that were supposed to go to Russian airline Transaero, but that airline filed for bankruptcy in 2015. Since the planes were in storage, they seemed like good candidates for what the government is looking for.

As you’d expect, these planes have special features and interiors to protect the president. The pair of Boeing 747-8s were initially supposed to cost the government $3.9 billion, while they’re now projected to cost around $5.3 billion. For context, the passenger version of the 747-8 is no longer in production, but when it was, the list price was just over $400 million, so these planes cost more than six times as much as “standard” 747-8s, due to all the special features.

The government was supposed to take delivery of the 747-8s in 2024, though that timeline has now been pushed back, as the pandemic has delayed the work being done on these planes.

Well, Boeing has had a rather interesting hiccup with this project…

Tequila bottles found on future Air Force One

The Wall Street Journal reports that Boeing has launched an investigation into the discovery of two empty tequila bottles that were found inside one of the planes that’s due to become the future Air Force One. This happened in Boeing’s facility in San Antonio, Texas, though it’s not clear where in the plane the bottles of tequila were found.

Why is this such a big deal? For one, alcohol is banned at Boeing’s facilities, and it’s concerning if someone is drinking on the job. But this is a much bigger deal because we’re talking about Air Force One — this is a project that requires special security clearance for everyone involved, given all the extra security equipment on the plane. Clearly something isn’t going the way it should if workers are sneaking alcohol onto the plane.

If it were vodka, one could wonder if maybe the bottles had been there since the Transaero days, and executives had a little pre-delivery party on the plane. 😉 But tequila? Hmmm…

I’d say that I’m curious to see what comes of this investigation, but I can’t imagine it’ll be made public, so that’s a moot point.

Bottom line

Boeing is currently working on two 747-8s to become the future Air Force Ones. This requires a huge number of upgrades, given the special security and interior features that are required.

We haven’t heard much about this project lately, though the latest update is an interesting one — two tequila bottles found on one of the planes have caused an investigation to be launched. Not only does Boeing not allow alcohol at its facilities, but this project in particular requires special security clearance, making the findings even more concerning.

What do you make of this situation?

Conversations (20)
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  1. Ken D. Guest

    Inspection paper trail! Adios to anyone who stamped the inspection.

  2. DCharlie Guest

    One slight correction - I think you should write that "Air Force One" is the call sign designated to any fixed wing aircraft carrying the POTUS.

    Technically, Marine One is the name for any marine aircraft carrying the POTUS. However, in practice, Marine One is typically used for any helicopter carrying the POTUS.

  3. Lukas Guest

    It’s more than twelve times more expensive, not six (5,300/400-1).

    1. red_robbo Guest

      Read it again. There are two of them, so it's 5,300/800.

  4. JK Guest

    HAHA Yeah! Since it's tequila I guess some Mexicans left it there! Good point about the vodka and Russians. Completely not racist!

  5. Bigben Guest

    Do we really need a 747? I mean, the money! Why not a 777 or 787?

  6. Eskimo Guest

    HA Boeing strikes again!!!!

    What people don't realize is that this isn't the first time. The Air Force rejected deliveries of KC-46 (767) at least 2 times because of FOD.

    Just Google Boing FOD and compare it with Airbus FOD.

    Boeing is a repeat offender and now they've done it to the Commander in Chief. Time for real punishments?

  7. YULtide Guest

    What kind of tequila?

  8. Bo Guest

    As iconic as the Jackie Kennedy livery is, I hate to admit, I think I like Trump's livery better. It just looks more modern and more American

  9. Ghostrider5408 Guest

    Boeing can not even get out of its own way, once again an issue within the production side of the company and Air Force One to boot. Where is all the security during construction all this? This brings about a whole host of concerns seemingly sone one will have to go back through every inch of those birds "just in case".

    No wonder people are preferring to fly AB more and more and with...

    Boeing can not even get out of its own way, once again an issue within the production side of the company and Air Force One to boot. Where is all the security during construction all this? This brings about a whole host of concerns seemingly sone one will have to go back through every inch of those birds "just in case".

    No wonder people are preferring to fly AB more and more and with the Chinese gaining rapidly BA will be a true "third rate" plane manufacture. I still remember when I was in the AF dealing with BA tech reps and the BS they gave us. Oh they wanted to party though.

  10. Peter Guest

    I wonder how this story even gets out. (Sort of) Pretty funny...

    One thing I've always wondered about AirForce 1 - obviously the planes are highly unique with all of their features, but are the engines the same as standard 747s? Or do they use special/higher power/faster engines?

  11. James Guest

    Yet another silly waste of money investigating something that doesn't matter

    1. RCB Guest

      There was a security breach on the future Air Force One plane, which could mean someone with bad intentions has messed with a critical component of the plane, but at the very least means that one of the people trusted with classified clearance is not trustworthy afterall, all of this matters very very much!

    2. Eskimo Guest

      @James

      You mean Vietnam, Iraq, Afghanistan, or daylight savings?

      Yes that stupid thing is a little over a month away.

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Jordan Member

Another resident racist on here. Lovely.

2
Peter Guest

I wonder how this story even gets out. (Sort of) Pretty funny... One thing I've always wondered about AirForce 1 - obviously the planes are highly unique with all of their features, but are the engines the same as standard 747s? Or do they use special/higher power/faster engines?

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GLCTraveler Guest

True........ Bad form by me. We need to preserve the VC-25s and bring in a couple of C17s instead. I honestly was thinking of safer seating configurations, with seat belts, etc., not packed, racked, and stacked on C17s like the evacuations from Afghanistan... P.S. I have a Master's in International Economics from Columbia and I'm preparing for my Doctoral Dissertation in International Political Affairs, plus I worked on both of Obama's election committees, so NEENEER NEENEER to you!! ;-) Thanks, Eskimo

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