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Accident description
Last updated: 19 October 2017
Status:
Date:Friday 30 April 1954
Time:09:18
Type:Silhouette image of generic DC3 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Douglas C-47A-DL (DC-3)
Operator:Darbhanga Aviation
Registration: VT-DEM
C/n / msn: 13792
First flight: 1944
Engines: 2 Pratt & Whitney R-1830-92
Crew:Fatalities: 3 / Occupants: 3
Passengers:Fatalities: 2 / Occupants: 8
Total:Fatalities: 5 / Occupants: 11
Airplane damage: Damaged beyond repair
Location:1 km (0.6 mls) S of Calcutta-Dum Dum Airport (CCU) (   India)
Phase: Initial climb (ICL)
Nature:Domestic Non Scheduled Passenger
Departure airport:Calcutta-Dum Dum Airport (CCU/VECC), India
Destination airport:Balurghat Airport (RGH/VEBG), India
Narrative:
The no. 1 engine of the DC-3 caught fire immediately after takeoff from Calcutta runway 19R. The aircraft failed to gain height, stalled and crashed into trees, about 1 km past the runway end.

Probable Cause:

PROBABLE CAUSE: "a) Delay in feathering after failure of the port engine (due to inexperience of the pilot in emergency procedures), which resulted in a loss of height; b) the subsequent attempt to establish a climb with a nose-high attitude (to get over the obstructions), below the recommended single-engine rate of climb speed, with both gear and flaps up, and c) the progressive loss of airspeed which finally resulted in a stall on a coconut tree. Although there is no doubt that the profuse smoke emanating from the port engine was due to the failure of the engine, it was not possible to determine the primary cause of that failure."

Classification:
Loss of control

Sources:
» Douglas DC-3 Production List (Issue no. 28)
» ICAO Accident Digest, Circular 47-AN/42 (101-104)
» The Indian Express - May 1, 1954


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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 Calcutta-Dum Dum Airport to Balurghat Airport as the crow flies is 290 km (181 miles).
Accident location: Approximate; accuracy within a few 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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