ASN Aircraft accident de Havilland Canada DHC-4A Caribou N5488R Sable Island, NL, Canada
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Status:Accident investigation report completed and information captured
Date:Tuesday 23 October 1984
Type:Silhouette image of generic DHC4 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
de Havilland Canada DHC-4A Caribou
Operator:NewCal Aviation
Registration: N5488R
MSN: 216
First flight: 1964
Engines: 2 Pratt & Whitney R-2000-7M2
Crew:Fatalities: 1 / Occupants: 2
Passengers:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 0
Total:Fatalities: 1 / Occupants: 2
Aircraft damage: Damaged beyond repair
Location:360 km (225 mls) ESE off Sable Island, NL, Canada (   Atlantic Ocean)
Phase: En route (ENR)
Departure airport:Santa Maria-Vila do Porto Airport, Azores (SMA/LPAZ), Portugal
Destination airport:St. John's Airport, NL (YYT/CYYT), Canada
The DHC-4 ran out of fuel after losing all navigational aids and was forced to ditch into the North Atlantic Ocean.

The aircraft had operated for the Zambian Air Force as AF-303. It was re-registered 9J-NAA and ferried to Malta. In 1984 the aircraft was overhauled and re-registered N5844R. It first flew after overhaul on 17 October 1984. The aircraft subsequently departed on a ferry flight to Canada.

Probable Cause:

Preflight planning/preparation..Poor..Pilot in command
Fuel consumption calculations..Inaccurate..Pilot in command
Contributing Factors:
Weather condition..Rain
Weather condition..Unfavorable wind
Anxiety/apprenhension..Pilot in command

Fuel exhaustion

» Aurora rendezvous with the past / Patrick Spiteri


photo of DHC-4A-Caribou-9J-NAA
accident date: 23-10-1984
type: de Havilland Canada DHC-4A Caribou
registration: 9J-NAA

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 Santa Maria-Vila do Porto Airport, Azores to St. John's Airport, NL as the crow flies is 2523 km (1577 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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