Accident Douglas C-54G-10-DO (DC-4) N88942, Friday 20 March 1953
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Date:Friday 20 March 1953
Type:Silhouette image of generic DC4 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different    
Douglas C-54G-10-DO (DC-4)
Owner/operator:Transocean Air Lines
Registration: N88942
MSN: 36076
Year of manufacture:1945
Total airframe hrs:5976 hours
Engine model:Pratt & Whitney R-2000-4
Fatalities:Fatalities: 35 / Occupants: 35
Other fatalities:0
Aircraft damage: Destroyed, written off
Location:19 km SW of Alvarado, CA -   United States of America
Phase: En route
Nature:Passenger - Non-Scheduled/charter/Air Taxi
Departure airport:Roswell-Industrial Airport, NM (ROW/KROW)
Destination airport:Oakland International Airport, CA (OAK/KOAK)
Investigating agency: CAB
Confidence Rating: Accident investigation report completed and information captured
Transocean Air Lines Flight 942 departed Roswell at 12:11 for Oakland. The flight was for the purpose of transporting military personnel. After departing Roswell the flight progressed in a routine manner and at 14:51, when in the vicinity of Winslow, Arizona, the Defense VFR flight plan was changed to IFR, still at least 500 feet on top of clouds. At 18:19 the flight reported over the Newark, California, compass locator and fan marker at 8,000 feet where it held for 11 minutes. At 18:27, Oakland Approach Control cleared Flight 942 for a straight-in range approach, to descend in the holding pattern to cross the Newark compass locator at 3,500 feet and to report leaving each 1,000-foot level. Three minutes later, at 18:30, the flight reported leaving 8,000 feet, and subsequently reported leaving each 1,000-foot level. At 18:36, it reported being at 3,500 feet leaving the Newark compass locator inbound. Almost immediately thereafter the aircraft became uncontrollable. The aircraft descended in a steep right wing low slipping attitude until it crashed in a large flat field near Alvarado, CA.

PROBABLE CAUSE: "The loss of control of the aircraft for reasons unknown, during its descent from the Newark compass locator."

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


CAB File No, 1-0016
ICAO Accident Digest Circular 39-AN/34 (60-63)


  • 10th worst accident in 1953
  • 38th worst accident of this aircraft type
  • 23rd worst accident of this aircraft type at the time


Revision history:


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