Accident Curtiss C-46F-1-CU Commando N66534, Monday 28 September 1953
ASN logo

Date:Monday 28 September 1953
Type:Silhouette image of generic C46 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different    
Curtiss C-46F-1-CU Commando
Owner/operator:Resort Airlines, lsf United States Air Force - USAF
Registration: N66534
MSN: 22384
Year of manufacture:1945
Total airframe hrs:6952 hours
Engine model:Pratt & Whitney R-2800-75
Fatalities:Fatalities: 25 / Occupants: 41
Other fatalities:0
Aircraft damage: Destroyed, written off
Location:Louisville-Standiford Field, KY (SDF) -   United States of America
Phase: Approach
Nature:Passenger - Non-Scheduled/charter/Air Taxi
Departure airport:Philadelphia-North Philadelphia Airport, PA (PNE/KPNE)
Destination airport:Louisville-Standiford Field, KY (SDF/KSDF)
Investigating agency: CAB
Confidence Rating: Accident investigation report completed and information captured
The Curtiss was approaching Louisville Airport (SDF) runway 24 when it ballooned slightly during the flare out. Power was applied and the aircraft entered a steep climb. The angle of attack continued to increase until the aircraft stalled at an altitude of about 300 feet. The plane struck the ground with the nose and left wing, bursting into flames.

PROBABLE CAUSE: "Structural failure of the left elevator in flight, causing loss of control. The structural failure was brought about by the left outboard hinge bolt backing out of the assembly. The underlying cause was improper maintenance which resulted in the installation of hinge bolts and bearings not meeting specifications, and inadequate inspection which failed to detect this condition."

Accident investigation:
Investigating agency: CAB
Report number: final report
Status: Investigation completed
Download report: Final report


ICAO Accident Digest Circular 39-AN/34 (119-123)


  • 18th worst accident in 1953
  • 40th worst accident of this aircraft type
  • 26th worst accident of this aircraft type at the time


Revision history:


The Aviation Safety Network is an exclusive service provided by:
Quick Links:

CONNECT WITH US: FSF on social media FSF Facebook FSF Twitter FSF Youtube FSF LinkedIn FSF Instagram

©2024 Flight Safety Foundation

1920 Ballenger Av, 4th Fl.
Alexandria, Virginia 22314