Accident Sikorsky S-42B NC15376,
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Date:Friday 3 October 1941
Type:Silhouette image of generic s42 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different    
Sikorsky S-42B
Owner/operator:Pan American Airways (Pan Am)
Registration: NC15376
MSN: 4206
Year of manufacture:1936
Total airframe hrs:7832 hours
Engine model:Pratt & Whitney R-1690-S1EG Hornet
Fatalities:Fatalities: 2 / Occupants: 27
Aircraft damage: Destroyed, written off
Location:San Juan harbor -   Puerto Rico
Phase: Landing
Nature:Passenger - Scheduled
Departure airport:San Pedro de Macorís Seaplane Base
Destination airport:San Juan (unknown airport)
Investigating agency: CAB
Confidence Rating: Accident investigation report completed and information captured
Pan American World Airways Trip 203 originated at Miami, Florida, and was bound for Buenos Aires, Argentina, with numerous intermediate stops including those
at Antilla, Cuba; Port au Prince, Haiti; San Pedro de Macorís, Dominican Republic; and San Juan, Puerto Rico.
"Dominican Clipper" proceeded normally throughout its entire route except for becoming increasingly behind schedule. Following the approach to San Juan harbor, the airplane contacted the water in a nose-low attitude while moving sideways relative to the water. Almost immediately after first contact with the water the aircraft swerved violently to the right and broke into several major sections.

The failure of the captain to exercise requisite caution and skill in landing. The smooth surface of the water which rendered difficult the captain's depth perception, as well as the exact determination of any lateral movement of the aircraft, constituted a substantial contributing factor.

Accident investigation:
Investigating agency: CAB
Report number: SA-50
Status: Investigation completed
Duration: 3 months
Download report: Final report


History of this aircraft

Other occurrences involving this aircraft
19 February 1939 NC15376 Pan American Airways (Pan Am) 0 San Juan harbor sub
Loss of control



photo (c) CAB; San Juan harbor; October 1941; (publicdomain)

photo (c) CAB; San Juan harbor; October 1941; (publicdomain)

Revision history:


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