Criminal Occurrence description
Last updated: 30 July 2014
Status:Final
Date:Tuesday 22 May 1962
Time:21:17
Type:Boeing 707-124
Operator:Continental Air Lines
Registration: N70775
C/n / msn: 17611/49
First flight: 1959
Total airframe hrs:11946
Engines: 4 Pratt & Whitney JT3C-6
Crew:Fatalities: 8 / Occupants: 8
Passengers:Fatalities: 37 / Occupants: 37
Total:Fatalities: 45 / Occupants: 45
Airplane damage: Damaged beyond repair
Location:10 km (6.3 mls) NNW of Unionville, MO (   United States of America) show on map
Phase: En route (ENR)
Nature:Domestic Scheduled Passenger
Departure airport:Chicago-O'Hare International Airport, IL (ORD/KORD), United States of America
Destination airport:Kansas City Downtown Municipal Airport, MO (MKC/KMKC), United States of America
Flightnumber: 11
Narrative:
Continental Flight 11 took off from Chicago-O'Hare (ORD) at 20:35 for a one hour flight to Kansas City (MKC). The airplane climbed to FL390 and was vectored around a storm area. Just before the Waverly controller wanted to hand off Flight 11 Kansas City Center, in the vicinity of Centerville, IA, an explosive decompression occurred. The flight crew initiate the required emergency descent procedures and donned their smoke masks due to the dense fog which formed in the cabin immediately after the decompression. At separation of the tail, the remaining aircraft structure pitched nose down violently, causing the engines to tear off, after which it fell in uncontrolled gyrations. The fuselage of the Boeing 707, minus the aft 38 feet, and with part of the left and most of the right wing intact, struck the ground, headed westerly down a 10-degree slope of an alfalfa field.
Investigation by the FBI revealed that Thomas G. Doty had purchased a life insurance policy for $150,000, the maximum available; his death would also bring in another $150,000 in additional insurance (some purchased at the airport) and death benefits. Doty had recently been arrested for armed robbery and was to soon face a preliminary hearing in the matter. Investigators determined that Doty had purchased dynamite shortly before the crash, and were able to deduce that a bomb had been placed in the used towel bin of the right rear lavatory.


PROBABLE CAUSE: "The Board determines that the probable cause of this accident was the disintegrating force of a dynamite explosion which occurred in the right rear lavatory resulting in destruction of the aircraft."

Classification:
Sabotage
Tail failure
Loss of control

Sources:
» Continental Airlines Flight 11. (2007, April 10). In Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Retrieved 07:37, May 11, 2007, from http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Continental_Airlines_Flight_11&oldid=121741892
» ICAO Accident Digest No.14 Volume I, Circular 71-AN/63 (23-36)


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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 Chicago-O'Hare International Airport, IL to Kansas City Downtown Municipal Airport, MO as the crow flies is 643 km (402 miles).

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Boeing 707

  • 7th loss
  • 858 built
  • 3rd worst accident (at the time)
  • 28th worst accident (currently)
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 United States of America
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  • 68th worst accident (currently)
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