Accident de Havilland DH-106 Comet 1 G-ALYV, Saturday 2 May 1953
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Date:Saturday 2 May 1953
Time:16:35
Type:Silhouette image of generic COMT model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different    
de Havilland DH-106 Comet 1
Owner/operator:British Overseas Airways Corporation - BOAC
Registration: G-ALYV
MSN: 06008
Year of manufacture:1952
Total airframe hrs:1649 hours
Engine model:de Havilland Ghost 50 Mark I
Fatalities:Fatalities: 43 / Occupants: 43
Other fatalities:0
Aircraft damage: Destroyed, written off
Category:Accident
Location:32 km NW of Calcutta-Dum Dum Airport (CCU) -   India
Phase: En route
Nature:Passenger - Scheduled
Departure airport:Calcutta-Dum Dum Airport (CCU/VECC)
Destination airport:Delhi-Safdarjung Airport (VIDD)
Confidence Rating: Accident investigation report completed and information captured
Narrative:
A de Havilland DH-106 Comet 1 passenger plane, operated by BOAC, was destroyed in an accident near Calcutta, India. All 43 on board were killed.
The airplane operated on a return flight from London, UK to Singapore.
On its return leg from Singapore it landed at Calcutta-Dum Dum Airport at 15:10 hrs local time. Intermediate stops were made at Bangkok and Rangoon before arriving at Calcutta.
The flight took off from runway 19L at 15:29 and was cleared to climb under Visual Flight Rules and report when passing 7500 feet. The aircraft encountered a severe squall with thunderstorm shortly after takeoff when climbing to its cruising altitude, and suffered structural failure in the air which caused fire. The pilots lost control and the Comet crashed.

PROBABLE CAUSE: "Structural failure of the airframe during flight through a thunder squall. In the opinion of the Court, the structural failure was due to overstressing which resulted from either:- (1) Severe gusts encountered in the thunder squall, or (2) Overcontrolling or loss of control by the pilot when flying through the thunderstorm."

Sources:

CIVIL AIRCRAFT ACCIDENT Report of the Court Investigation on the Accident to COMET G-ALYV on 2nd May, 1953

Statistics

  • 6th worst accident in 1953
  • 5th worst accident of this aircraft type
  • worst accident of this aircraft type at the time

Location

Revision history:

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