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Accident description
Last updated: 22 August 2017
Date:Tuesday 5 September 1967
Time:05:10 UTC
Type:Silhouette image of generic IL18 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Ilyushin 18D
Operator:CSA Ceskoslovenské Aerolinie
Registration: OK-WAI
C/n / msn: 187009705
First flight: 1967
Crew:Fatalities: 4 / Occupants: 8
Passengers:Fatalities: 33 / Occupants: 61
Total:Fatalities: 37 / Occupants: 69
Airplane damage: Damaged beyond repair
Location:1 km (0.6 mls) SE of Gander, NF (   Canada)
Phase: Initial climb (ICL)
Nature:International Scheduled Passenger
Departure airport:Gander Airport, NF (YQX/CYQX), Canada
Destination airport:Havana-José Martí International Airport (HAV/MUHA), Cuba
Flightnumber: 523
The aircraft was on a flight from Prague to Havana with intermediate stops at Shannon and Gander. The flight to Gander was routine and the Ilyushin was refueled for the remainder of the flight. The flight took off from runway 14 and started to climb under an abnormally shallow angle. The aircraft struck a wire of a mast. It contacted the ground and continued until striking a railway embankment, 4000 feet past the end of the runway.
The airplane was overloaded by 119 kg but this would have had no significant effect on the performance of the aircraft,

Probable Cause:

PROBABLE CAUSE: Undetermined.

» ICAO Accident Digest Circular 107-AN/81 (247-254)


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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 Gander Airport, NF to Havana-José Martí International Airport as the crow flies is 3752 km (2345 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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Ilyushin 18

  • 569 built
  • 33rd loss
  • 20th fatal accident
  • 8th worst accident (at the time)
  • 26th worst accident (currently)
» safety profile

  • 7th worst accident (at the time)
  • 11th worst accident (currently)
» safety profile