Accident Douglas MC-54M (DC-4) 44-9068, Thursday 17 November 1955
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Date:Thursday 17 November 1955
Type:Silhouette image of generic DC4 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different    
Douglas MC-54M (DC-4)
Owner/operator:United States Air Force - USAF
Registration: 44-9068
MSN: 27294
Year of manufacture:1945
Fatalities:Fatalities: 14 / Occupants: 14
Other fatalities:0
Aircraft damage: Destroyed, written off
Location:48 km WNW Las Vegas, NV -   United States of America
Phase: En route
Departure airport:Hollywood-Lockheed Air Terminal, CA (BUR/KBUR)
Destination airport:Nevada Test and Training Range / Area 51 Airport, NV (KXTA)
USAF C-54 44-9068 was routinely assigned to carry scientific and technical personnel from the Lockheed "Skunk Works" in Burbank to the secret Area 51, where they were working on the U-2 plane.
Because of the secrecy, the crew were never in contact with air traffic control. The plane flew on a new route that would cut 10 minutes off the total flight time. However, the C-54 was blown off course by a severe storm front and while lost in the clouds, an error in the assumed position of the aircraft in relation to the Spring Mountain range resulted in the crash a mere 50 feet below the crest of an 11,300-foot ridge leading to the peak of Mount Charleston.


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