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Last updated: 24 June 2018
Datum:Montag 16 November 1959
Flugzeugtyp:Silhouette image of generic DC7 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Douglas DC-7B
Betrieben durch:National Airlines
Gemietet von :Delta Air Lines
Kennzeichen: N4891C
Werknummer: 45355/922
Baujahr: 1958
Triebwerk: 4 Wright R-3350
Besatzung:Todesopfer: 6 / Insassen: 6
Fluggäste:Todesopfer: 36 / Insassen: 36
Gesamt:Todesopfer: 42 / Insassen: 42
Sachschaden: Zerstört
Konsequenzen: Written off (damaged beyond repair)
Unfallort:57 km (35.6 Meilen) E vom Land entfernt von Pilottown, LA [Gulf of Mexico] (   Atlantischer Ozean)
Flugphase: Während des Fluges (ENR)
Betriebsart:Inländischer planmäßiger Passagierflug
Flug von:Tampa International Airport, FL (TPA/KTPA), USA
Flug nach:New Orleans International Airport, LA (MSY/KMSY), USA
Flugnummer: 967
National Airlines Flight 967 took off from Tampa (TPA) at 23:32 for a flight to New Orleans (MSY) at FL140. At 00:55 the aircraft suddenly crashed into the Gulf of Mexico.
Intensive sea and air searches resulted in finding nine floating bodies and a small amount of floating debris the following morning. The main wreckage has not been located despite several well placed searches.

There is speculation that a con man by the name of Robert Vernon Spears had sabotaged the aircraft. He had taken an air travel policy of $100,000 and gave his ticket to William Allen Taylor, of Tampa, Florida. After the accident, Spears disappeared and was later apprehended in Phoenix, Arizona. He supposedly disappeared to avoid prosecution for abortion.

The Civil Aeronautics Board, with the aid of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), thoroughly investigated Mr. Spears' activities in order to determine whether they might have had a bearing upon the accident. They were unable to find any such relationship.

Probable Cause:

PROBABLE CAUSE: "Because of the lack of physical evidence, the probable cause of this accident is unknown."

» ICAO Circular 64-AN/58 (77-79)
» LIFE Magazine 1 Feb 1960


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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 Tampa International Airport, FL to New Orleans International Airport, LA as the crow flies is 779 km (487 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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Douglas DC-7

  • 339 built
  • 10th loss
  • 7th Fataler Unfall
  • 5th worst accident (Zu diesem Zeitpunkt)
  • 9th worst accident (Momentan)
» safety profile

 Atlantischer Ozean
  • 7th worst accident (Zu diesem Zeitpunkt)
  • 12th worst accident (Momentan)
» safety profile