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Last updated: 19 March 2019
Date:Wednesday 18 September 1946
Time:07:42 UTC
Type:Silhouette image of generic DC4 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Douglas DC-4-1009
Registration: OO-CBG
C/n / msn: 42986
First flight: 1946
Crew:Fatalities: 6 / Occupants: 7
Passengers:Fatalities: 21 / Occupants: 37
Total:Fatalities: 27 / Occupants: 44
Aircraft damage: Damaged beyond repair
Location:35 km (21.9 mls) SW of Gander, NL (   Canada)
Phase: Approach (APR)
Nature:International Scheduled Passenger
Departure airport:Shannon Airport (SNN/EINN), Ireland
Destination airport:Gander Airport, NL (YQX/CYQX), Canada
The DC-4 was on a flight from Brussels, Belgium to New York, USA, with intermediate stops at Shannon, Ireland and Gander, Canada. The aircraft crashed in bad weather. Reportedly, the pilot attempted to carry out a visual approach to Gander by trying to descend below the clouds. Since the cloud base was about ground level, the airplane descended into trees. It crashed and broke up.

Probable Cause:

PROBABLE CAUSE: "The pilot did not carry out the appropriate approach procedure for landing in bad weather conditions."

Controlled Flight Into Terrain (CFIT) - Ground

» Air Britain Casualty compendium (pt. 44)
» Herman De Wulf
» Tragedy and Rescue - Sabena Airlines Crash, Gander Newfoundland, 1946


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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 Shannon Airport to Gander Airport, NL as the crow flies is 3156 km (1972 miles).
Accident location: Global; accuracy within tens or hundreds of kilometers.

This information is not presented as the Flight Safety Foundation or the Aviation Safety Network’s 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

  • 1242 built
  • 51st loss
  • 21st fatal accident
  • 4th worst accident (at the time)
  • 52nd worst accident (currently)
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  • The worst accident (at the time)
  • 15th worst accident (currently)
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