Accident Boeing 707-436 G-APFE, Saturday 5 March 1966
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Date:Saturday 5 March 1966
Time:14:15
Type:Silhouette image of generic B704 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different    
Boeing 707-436
Owner/operator:British Overseas Airways Corporation - BOAC
Registration: G-APFE
MSN: 17706/113
Year of manufacture:1960
Total airframe hrs:19523 hours
Cycles:6744 flights
Engine model:Rolls-Royce Conway 508
Fatalities:Fatalities: 124 / Occupants: 124
Other fatalities:0
Aircraft damage: Destroyed, written off
Category:Accident
Location:Mount Fuji -   Japan
Phase: En route
Nature:Passenger - Scheduled
Departure airport:Tokyo-Haneda Airport (HND/RJTT)
Destination airport:Hong Kong-Kai Tak International Airport (HKG/VHHH)
Confidence Rating: Accident investigation report completed and information captured
Narrative:
BOAC Flight 911 was a scheduled service from San Francisco (SFO) to Hong Kong (HKG) via Honolulu (HNL) and Tokyo (HND). The Boeing 707 was expected to arrive at Tokyo Airport at 16:45 on 4 March. However, due to poor meteorological conditions at Tokyo and because the precision approach radar (PAR) of the GCA was out of service, it diverted to Fukuoka (FUK) and landed there at 18:00. After staying overnight at Fukuoka, Flight 911 left for Tokyo at 11:25 and landed there at 12:43. The aircraft was prepared for the next leg to Hong Kong and a flight plan was filed for a flight in accordance with the instrument flight rules via Oshima on airway JG6 to Hong Kong at FL310.
At 13:42 hours the crew contacted ATC requesting permission to start the engines and clearance for a VMC climb via Fuji-Rebel-Kushimoto. The aircraft left the ramp at 13:50. It was instructed to make "a right turn after take off", and departed Tokyo Airport at 13:58. After takeoff the aircraft flew over Gotemba City on a heading of approximately 298 deg at an altitude of approximately 4900 m and indicated airspeed of 320 to 370 knots. The aircraft, trailing white vapor, then suddenly lost altitude over the Takigahara area, and parts of the aircraft began to break away over Tsuchiyadai and Ichirimatsu. Finally over Tarobo at an altitude of approx. 2000 m, the forward fuselage broke away. The mid-aft fuselage together with the wing, making a slow flat spin to the right, crashed into a forest at the foot of Mount Fuji. The forward fuselage crashed into the forest approx. 300 m to the west of the above site and caught fire.

PROBABLE CAUSE: "The aircraft suddenly encountered abnormally severe turbulence over Gotemba City which imposed a gust load considerably in excess of the design limit."

Sources:

ICAO Aircraft Accident Digest No.16 - Volume II, Circular 82-AN/69 (35-55)

Statistics

  • 2nd worst accident in 1966
  • worst accident of this aircraft type
  • worst accident of this aircraft type at the time

Location

Images:


photo (c) Aviation Safety Network


photo (c) Mel Lawrence; New York-John F. Kennedy International Airport, NY (JFK); February 1962


photo (c) Jerry Hughes; London-Heathrow Airport (LHR/EGLL); 11 April 1965

Revision history:

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