Accident Curtiss C-46F-1-CU Commando N1911M, Saturday 5 April 1952
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Date:Saturday 5 April 1952
Type:Silhouette image of generic C46 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different    
Curtiss C-46F-1-CU Commando
Owner/operator:US Airlines
Registration: N1911M
MSN: 22464
Year of manufacture:1945
Total airframe hrs:4293 hours
Engine model:Pratt & Whitney R-2800-75
Fatalities:Fatalities: 2 / Occupants: 2
Other fatalities:3
Aircraft damage: Destroyed, written off
Location:7 km N of New York-Idlewild International Airport, NY (IDL) -   United States of America
Phase: Manoeuvring (airshow, firefighting, ag.ops.)
Departure airport:Raleigh/Durham Airport, NC (RDU/KRDU)
Destination airport:New York-Idlewild International Airport, NY (IDL/KIDL)
Investigating agency: CAB
Confidence Rating: Accident investigation report completed and information captured
Flight 4-2 departed Fort Lauderdale at 00:55. The destination was Teterboro, New Jersey, with intermediate stops at Charleston. South Carolina, and Raleigh-Durham, North Carolina. The flight was routine with a landing at Raleigh-Durham at 05:24. Because of worsening weather at the destination the crew filed a flight plan to New York-Idlewild. The flight departed at 06:08. Near Idlewild the crew were told to hold over Scotland at 3,500 feet, and to expect approach clearance at 08:28. Idlewild weather was as follows: clouds at 500 feet broken, 1800 feet overcast, visibility 1 1/2 miles in heavy rain. When the approach controller first saw the flight on the airport surveillance radar (ASR) it was approaching Scotland. He asked the flight if it could make a straight-in approach from its present position and the flight replied affirmatively. It was then cleared for a straight-in approach, instructed to descend immediately, and to report passing through 2,500 feet. The flight acknowledged and subsequently reported leaving 2,500 feet, and then leaving 2,000 feet. The controller then cleared the flight to continue descent, to advise upon reaching 1,500 feet, and then cleared it to "pass over runway 04 and make left turn into runway 13 left."
The local controller then took over control of the flight and advised it to "bear left and make a right turn into runway 13L, that's the big runway on the north side of the airport, and call base leg coming up on the Federal Building. Go ahead and you'll probably be west of the Federal Building when you call." This was acknowledged by the flight. From an altitude of 500 feet the crew decided to execute a missed approach due to limited forward visibility. The tower gave immediate instruction to turn right and proceed to Long Beach intersection at 1,500 feet altitude. This transmission was acknowledged. Power was applied but then the no. 2 engine failed. In turbulent air conditions the pilot lost control of the plane. It descended rapidly in a sharply nose-down right slip taking on aspects of a spin, and crashed at the intersection of 169th Street and 89th Avenue, Jamaica, New York, about 4.4 miles north of the Idlewild control tower.

PROBABLE CAUSE: "Loss of control following sudden engine failure caused by a deteriorated fuel feed valve diaphragm during an attempted missed approach."

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


Air Britain Casualty compendium (pt. 54)
CAB File No. 1-0021
ICAO Circular 38-AN/33 (55-57)


Revision history:


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