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Accident description
Last updated: 25 November 2015
Date:Saturday 5 May 1945
Type:Silhouette image of generic DC4 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Douglas C-54E-1-DO (DC-4)
Operator:United States Army Air Force - USAAF
Registration: 44-9043
C/n / msn: 27269
First flight: 1945
Crew:Fatalities: 6 / Occupants: 6
Passengers:Fatalities: 15 / Occupants: 15
Total:Fatalities: 21 / Occupants: 21
Airplane damage: Damaged beyond repair
Location:Manus Island (   Papua New Guinea)
Phase: En route (ENR)
Departure airport:Lorengau Airfield, Papua New Guinea
Destination airport:Biak-Sorido Airfield, Indonesia
The Skymaster departed Sorido Airstrip. After takeoff the pilot did not turn away to clear rising terrain. The aircraft flew into a bluff at an elevation of about 500 feet (150 m). It was deemed possible that the flaps were retracted too soon after takeoff.

Controlled Flight Into Terrain (CFIT) - Mountain

» Military aviation disasters : significant losses since 1908 / D. Gero, 1999
» USAAS-USAAC-USAAF-USAF Aircraft Serial Numbers--1908 to Present / Joe Baugher


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This map shows the airport of departure and the intended destination of the flight. The line between the airports does not display the exact flight path.
Distance from Lorengau Airfield to Biak-Sorido Airfield as the crow flies is 1244 km (777 miles).

This information is not presented as the Flight Safety Foundation or the Aviation Safety Networkĺs opinion as to the cause of the accident. It is preliminary and is based on the facts as they are known at this time.
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Douglas DC-4

  • 30th loss
  • 1242+ built
  • 4th worst accident (at the time)
  • 68th worst accident (currently)
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 Papua New Guinea
  • 3rd worst accident (at the time)
  • 8th worst accident (currently)
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