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Last updated: 20 October 2019
Statuts:Enquête Officielle
Date:lundi 12 décembre 1949
Type/Sous-type:Silhouette image of generic DC3 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Douglas DC-3-313A
Compagnie:Capital Airlines
Immatriculation: NC25691
Numéro de série: 2256
Année de Fabrication: 1940
Heures de vol:27396
Moteurs: 2 Wright R-1820-G102A
Equipage:victimes: 2 / à bord: 3
Passagers:victimes: 4 / à bord: 20
Total:victimes: 6 / à bord: 23
Dégats de l'appareil: Perte Totale
Conséquences: Written off (damaged beyond repair)
Lieu de l'accident:0,6 km (0.4 milles) SE de Washington-National Airport, DC (DCA) (   Etats-Unis d'Amérique)
Phase de vol: En approche (APR)
Nature:Transport de Passagers Nat.
Aéroport de départ:Newport News/Williamsburg International Airport, VA (PHF/KPHF), Etats-Unis d'Amérique
Aéroport de destination:Washington-National Airport, DC (DCA/KDCA), Etats-Unis d'Amérique
Numéro de vol: 500
Capital Airlines Flight 500 departed Memphis for a flight to Washington-National Airport, DC (DCA) via Norfolk and Newport News. At 18:43 the DC-3 took off from Newport News en route to Washington and climbed to its cruising altitude of 4,000 feet. The crew reported over Richmond at 19:10, and was then cleared by Air Route Traffic Control to proceed at 8,000 feet to the Clifton Intersection, which is 32 miles southwest of the Washington National Airport. By the time that the flight arrived over Clifton, however, ceiling and visibility at Washington were below landing minimums, so instructions were given to the flight to hold. Approximately 410 gallons of fuel remained on board, and weather conditions at the alternate airports of Richmond and Norfolk were remaining well above landing minimums. At 20:25 weather was reported to be just enough for landing: the ceiling was 400 feet variable, and the visibility was 3/4 of a mile. The flight was cleared to descend to 3,500 feet in the holding pattern. While the visibility was increasing to 1,5 miles restricted by light rain and fog, the flight was cleared to descend to 1,500 feet and to commence its landing approach. At 20:38, the flight reported leaving the outer marker, five miles south of the end of runway 36, at which time it was cleared by the tower to land.
When the flight was 1,5 miles out, it began to deviate to the right from the center line. The GCA operator advised the flight that it was drifting sharply to the right, and indicated that it had gone 1,500 feet off course. While manoeuvring back to the left, the aircraft was stalled at too low an altitude to effect recovery. The aircraft struck the water of the Potomac River, left wing and nose first, in a steep nose down, left turning attitude.

Probable Cause:

PROBABLE CAUSE: "The stalling of the aircraft at an altitude too low to permit a recovery."

» CAB File No: 1-0150


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Ce plan montre l'aéroport de départ ainsi que la supposée destination du vol. La ligne fixe reliant les deux aéroports n'est pas le plan de vol exact.
La distance entre Newport News/Williamsburg International Airport, VA et Washington-National Airport, DC est de 196 km (122 miles).
Accident location: Approximate; accuracy within a few kilometers.

Les informations ci-dessus ne représentent pas l'opinion de la 'Flight Safety Foundation' ou de 'Aviation Safety Network' sur les causes de l'accident. Ces informations prélimimaires sont basées sur les faits tel qu'ils sont connus à ce jour.
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