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Accident description
Last updated: 11 December 2017
Status:
Date:Sunday 18 August 1974
Type:Silhouette image of generic C141 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Lockheed C-141A-LM Starlifter
Operator:United States Air Force - USAF
Registration: 65-0274
C/n / msn: 300-6126
First flight:
Total airframe hrs:16339
Engines: 4 Pratt & Whitney TF33-P-7
Crew:Fatalities: 7 / Occupants: 7
Passengers:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 0
Total:Fatalities: 7 / Occupants: 7
Airplane damage: Damaged beyond repair
Location:28 km (17.5 mls) N of La Paz-El Alto Airport (LPB) (   Bolivia)
Phase: En route (ENR)
Nature:Military
Departure airport:Balboa-Howard AFB (BLB/MPHO), Panama
Destination airport:La Paz-El Alto Airport (LPB/SLLP), Bolivia
Narrative:
The airport at La Paz, the destination of the C-141, is located at an elevation of 13,325 feet (4077 m). Area weather at the time included extensive cloud cover from 700 agl to FL240. When the crew reported an estimated position of three minutes from the La Paz VOR, the controller cleared them a descent from FL240 to FL180. In fact, the aircraft was much further east of the VOR, than the crew believed. The crew started their descent until it impacted a 20,000 ft mountain at the 18,700 ft level (5700 m).

Classification:
Controlled Flight Into Terrain (CFIT) - Mountain

Sources:
» C-141 Lifetime Mishap Summary / Lt. Col. Paul M. Hansen, USAFR, Ret. McChord AFB WA (1 October, 2004)


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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 Balboa-Howard AFB to La Paz-El Alto Airport as the crow flies is 3077 km (1923 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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