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Last updated: 2 March 2021
Status:Final
Date:Saturday 7 February 1953
Time:09:28 UTC
Type:Silhouette image of generic DC4 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Douglas C-54A-5-DC (DC-4)
Operator:Union Aéromaritime de Transport
Registration: F-BFGR
C/n / msn: 10290
First flight: 1944
Total airframe hrs:41250
Engines: 4 Pratt & Whitney R-2000-7
Crew:Fatalities: 6 / Occupants: 8
Passengers:Fatalities: 3 / Occupants: 13
Total:Fatalities: 9 / Occupants: 21
Aircraft damage: Damaged beyond repair
Location:5,5 km (3.4 mls) NE of Bordeaux-Mérignac Airport (BOD) (   France)
Phase: Approach (APR)
Nature:International Scheduled Passenger
Departure airport:Casablanca (unknown airport), Morocco
Destination airport:Bordeaux-Mérignac Airport (BOD/LFBD), France
Narrative:
The C-54 operated on a flight from Abidjan (ABJ), Ivory Coast, to Paris, France with en route stops at Casablanca and Bordeaux.
While on approach to Bordeaux in poor visibility the airplane descended into terrain and crashed in a small wood.

Probable Cause:

CAUSES:
The causes of the accident classified in chronological order of occurrence can be analysed as follows:
(a) Unsuccessful initiative of the tower controller and pilot error of judgement leading to an attempted landing in poor visibility;
(b) Use of a procedure that takes up attention by over-using the means for directional guidance to the detriment of a safe altitude;
(c) Probable altimeter error (setting or other);
(d) Error of appreciation of the vertical of the outer marker.

Crew fatigue resulting from excessively long continuous working hours and interference with the crew's work caused by the presence of two extra members in the cockpit during training may have contributed to the occurrence of the above errors. It is indeed necessary to point out here, in favour of the pilot, qualities of seriousness, prudence and perfect competence unanimously recognized.

Accident investigation:
cover
Investigating agency: BEA
Status: Investigation completed
Accident number: Report f-gr530207
Download report: Final report

Classification:
Insufficient rest / fatigue
Controlled Flight Into Terrain (CFIT) - Ground

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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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