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Last updated: 16 November 2018
Status:
Date:Thursday 3 July 1947
Type:Silhouette image of generic DC4 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Douglas C-54G-1-DO Skymaster
Operator:United States Army Air Force - USAAF
Registration: 45-519
C/n / msn: 35972
First flight: 1945
Crew:Fatalities: 6 / Occupants: 6
Passengers:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 0
Total:Fatalities: 6 / Occupants: 6
Aircraft damage: Damaged beyond repair
Location:470 km (293.8 mls) NE off Florida coast, USA (   Atlantic Ocean)
Phase: En route (ENR)
Nature:Military
Departure airport:Bermuda-Kindley Field NAS (NWU), Bermuda
Destination airport:West Palm Beach-Morrison AAF, FL (PBI/KPBI), United States of America
Narrative:
A C-54 Skymaster was destroyed when it crashed into the Atlantic Ocean off Florida. All six on board were killed.
The airplane operated on an over water flight from Bermuda-Kindley Field to West Palm Beach, FL. En route the airplane entered an area of severe weather. The pilot failed to maintain control of the airplane.

Probable Cause:

After considering all available facts and existing weather conditions, it is the opinion of the Accident Investigating Board at Morrison Field, Florida, that the aircraft encountered violent turbulence and the pilot lost control of the aircraft. It is possible that structural failure was a factor prior to contact with the ocean. No evidence of fire exists. There was no evidence of a ditching attempt and the debris found indicates that the crew compartment was torn apart on contact with the ocean. The last plotted position of the aircraft and the corresponding position of the frontal zone substantiates the weather assumption. Contributing factors to this accident were possible navigational error allowing aircraft to drift north of course to frontal zone and pilot error in that no apparent effort was made to circumnavigate the frontal weather.

Sources:
» www.Bermuda-Triangle.Org
» USAAS-USAAC-USAAF-USAF Aircraft Serial Numbers--1908 to Present / Joe Baugher
» Aviation Archaeological Investigation and Research (AAIR)


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Map
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 Bermuda-Kindley Field NAS to West Palm Beach-Morrison AAF, FL as the crow flies is 1607 km (1005 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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