Unlawful Interference Douglas DC-6B N8225H, Wednesday 6 January 1960
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Date:Wednesday 6 January 1960
Time:02:38
Type:Silhouette image of generic DC6 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different    
Douglas DC-6B
Owner/operator:National Airlines
Registration: N8225H
MSN: 43742/300
Year of manufacture:1952
Total airframe hrs:24836 hours
Engine model:Pratt & Whitney R-2800-CB16
Fatalities:Fatalities: 34 / Occupants: 34
Other fatalities:0
Aircraft damage: Destroyed, written off
Category:Unlawful Interference
Location:2,4 km NW of Bolivia, NC -   United States of America
Phase: En route
Nature:Passenger - Scheduled
Departure airport:New York-Idlewild International Airport, NY (IDL/KIDL)
Destination airport:Miami International Airport, FL (MIA/KMIA)
Investigating agency: CAB
Confidence Rating: Accident investigation report completed and information captured
Narrative:
National Airlines flight 601 was scheduled nonstop Boeing 707 jet flight from New York-Idlewild to Miami. The 707, which was leased from PanAm, suffered a maintenance issue and was substituted by a Lockheed L-188 Electra and a Douglas DC-6.
The DC-6 was re-designated flight 2511 and departed Idlewild at 23:34 hours. The flight proceeded routinely in accordance with its flight plan until shortly after passing Wilmington, North Carolina.
At 02:31 the crew contacted the company radio station at Wilmington while over Carolina Beach at 18000 feet, and transmitted a routine progress report. Shortly after the completion of this radio contact a dynamite explosion occurred in the passenger cabin. This explosion severely impaired the structural integrity of the aircraft and after making a wide descending right turn, it experienced in flight disintegration and crashed 1,5 miles northwest of Bolivia at 02:38 some 16 miles west of its intended flight path.

An investigation showed that the dynamite was detonated by means of dry cell batteries and that the device was placed at a point beneath the extreme right seat of seat row 7. Part of the fuselage broke away, striking the no.3 propeller.
Mr. Julian A. Frank (32) was in close proximity to the dynamite charge when the detonation occurred. He had lost several hundred thousand dollars in bad investments in 1959 and was under investigation on charges of defrauding his clients. In the six months before his death he bought nearly $900,000 in life insurance, with his wife and children as beneficiaries.

PROBABLE CAUSE: "The accident was caused by the detonation of dynamite within the passenger cabin."

Accident investigation:
cover
  
Investigating agency: CAB
Report number: File 1-0002
Status: Investigation completed
Duration: 6 months
Download report: Final report

Sources:

ICAO Circular 64-AN/58 (96-99)
Bomber's deed stings 50 years after crash (newsobserver.com)

Statistics

  • 18th worst accident in 1960
  • 28th worst accident of this aircraft type
  • 14th worst accident of this aircraft type at the time

Location

Images:


photo (c) CAB; near Bolivia, NC; 06 January 1960

Revision history:

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