Narrative:The Flying Tiger cargo flight departed from Newark at 13:31, July 29 for a flight to Los Angeles. Stops were to be made at Cleveland, Detroit, Chicago, Des Moines and Denver. It arrived at Denver at 02:24 without incident. At Denver a crew change took place, cargo was unloaded and additional cargo was added. At 03:22, the flight taxied from the loading ramp as the crew received clearance from the control tower to proceed to the end of runway 12 for takeoff. Total aircraft weight was 48,268 pounds, which was 268 pounds more than the mtow. There was a ceiling of broken clouds at 12,000 feet, visibility was 40 miles, the wind was from the south-southeast at five miles per hour, temperature was 59 degrees, and the altimeter setting was 29.96. The published elevation for Stapleton Air Field is 5,325 feet ASL; however the density altitude for Stapleton at that time was computed to have been 6,500 feet. Wind decreased to two miles per hour during the taxi out for takeoff; and in response to the flight's request, the tower approved runway 17 for takeoff. This runway is 6,980 feet long. The crew performed their before takeoff checks and rolled onto the runway for takeoff at 03:29. The aircraft took an excessively long period of time to become airborne. The engines operated normally, developing 45-inch hg. of manifold pressure and 2700 rpm, but airspeed increased slowly. Between 90 and 100 miles per hour, and just before the end of the runway was reached, the aircraft was pulled off the runway as the captain applied back pressure on the control column. The landing gear was retracted and the speed increased to about 100-105 mph. A climb was made to about 100 feet. During the climb, the aircraft shuddered severely. Altitude was lost, and the aircraft struck an obstruction light on the top of a 40-foot electric light pole which was 1,910 feet south of the end of the runway. The aircraft struck three more poles, then touched ground and skidded for 350 feet. The crash landing was made in an alley way of a residential district. In addition to striking the electric light poles, the aircraft knocked down several fences, a small tool shed, and collided into two parked automobiles. No fire occurred.
PROBABLE CAUSE: "The sub-normal takeoff performance of the aircraft, the reason for which cannot be determined."
» CAB File No. 1-0092
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 Denver-Stapleton International Airport, CO to Los Angeles International Airport, CA as the crow flies is 1356 km (847 miles).