Narrative:BEA Flight 142 was en route from London to Naples flying on Airway Amber 1, reporting over Ostia at 23500 feet at 11:44. The flight reported continuing to Ponza, estimating arrival over this NDB at 11:57. At 10:45 a formation of 4 Italian Air Force North American F-86E Sabres had taken off from Pratica di Mare Airport on a group tactical training exercise in the Pratica CTR (West of Amber 1 airway) which was prohibited for civil aircraft. The formation was 5km E of Anzio on a 310deg heading carrying out a reverse attack manoeuvre consisting of an initial dive, followed by a climb turn to the right and a steep dive with final recovery to level flight. During the steep dive that followed the climbing turn, the leading aircraft collided with the Viscount. Both aircraft crashed, but the F-86 pilot was able to eject.
|Date:||Wednesday 22 October 1958|
|Type:||Vickers 701C Viscount|
|Operator:||British European Airways - BEA|
|C/n / msn:|| 63|
|First flight:|| 1954|
|Crew:||Fatalities: 5 / Occupants: 5|
|Passengers:||Fatalities: 26 / Occupants: 26|
|Total:||Fatalities: 31 / Occupants: 31 |
|Airplane damage:|| Written off|
|Airplane fate:|| Written off (damaged beyond repair)|
|Phase:|| En route (ENR)|
|Nature:||International Scheduled Passenger|
|Departure airport:||London-Heathrow Airport (LHR/EGLL), United Kingdom|
|Destination airport:||Napoli Airport (NAP/LIRN), Italy|
PROBABLE CAUSE: "The accident was attributed to "an Act of God" - since neither of the pilots saw the other aircraft before they collided.
A contributory cause of the accident was deviation of the Viscount from the airway which placed it in a prohibited area reserved for military activities."
» ICAO Accident Digest, Circular 59-AN/54 (215-227)
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 London-Heathrow Airport to Napoli Airport as the crow flies is 1618 km (1011 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.