ASN Aircraft accident Douglas DC-4 (C-54A-15-DC) C-FGNI Bronson Creek Airport, BC (YBM)
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Status:Accident investigation report completed and information captured
Date:Wednesday 14 August 1996
Type:Silhouette image of generic DC4 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Douglas DC-4 (C-54A-15-DC)
Operator:Air North
Registration: C-FGNI
MSN: 10389/120
First flight: 1944
Total airframe hrs:50754
Engines: 4 Pratt & Whitney R-2000-7M2
Crew:Fatalities: 1 / Occupants: 3
Passengers:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 0
Total:Fatalities: 1 / Occupants: 3
Aircraft damage: Damaged beyond repair
Location:near Bronson Creek Airport, BC (YBM) (   Canada)
Phase: En route (ENR)
Departure airport:Bronson Creek Airport, BC (YBM), Canada
Destination airport:Wrangell Airport, AK (WRG/PAWG), United States of America
The DC-4 aircraft, named 'Yukon Trader' was on a VFR flight from a remote mining strip at Bronson Creek, Canada to Wrangell, USA with a crew of three and about 16,600 pounds of cargo on board. At an altitude of 1,500 feet after takeoff the crew heard a whining noise. They switched inverters, but the problem persisted. Electrical instrument indications in the cockpit then became erratic, and the number 2 engine began to misfire; its fire warning light in the cockpit illuminated briefly. The crew carried out the engine fire drill; however, the fire did not extinguish. The captain commenced a right-hand turn to return to the Bronson Creek airstrip, and announced to the crew that the number 2 engine had separated from the wing. The captain applied maximum power to the three remaining engines; however, the aircraft began to lose altitude. Both pilots held the rudder and aileron controls at full right deflection in an attempt to prevent the aircraft from yawing or rolling to the left. The aircraft was shaking violently at that time, and the crew members were unable to read any of the engine or flight instruments. At about 50 feet above ground level, just short of the Iskut River, the pilots closed the throttles. The aircraft descended rapidly, and the burning left wing struck a tree just as the fuselage contacted the surface of the river. The three occupants escaped the burning aircraft, and the first officer and load master swam to safety. The captain is missing and is presumed to have drowned.

Probable Cause:

CAUSES AND CONTRIBUTING FACTORS: "The number 2 engine separated from the aircraft as a result of an intense fire in the wing. The loss of the engine rendered the aircraft uncontrollable, and the pilots were forced to land in the river."

Accident investigation:

Investigating agency: TSB Canada
Status: Investigation completed
Duration: 1 year
Accident number: TSB Report A96P0175
Download report: Final report


Engine separation


photo of Douglas-DC-4-C-FGNI
accident date: 14-08-1996
type: Douglas DC-4 (C-54A-15-DC)
registration: C-FGNI

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 Bronson Creek Airport, BC to Wrangell Airport, AK as the crow flies is 81 km (51 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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