Accident Douglas DC-3-229 N18936, Monday 4 September 1950
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Date:Monday 4 September 1950
Time:14:10
Type:Silhouette image of generic DC3 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different    
Douglas DC-3-229
Owner/operator:Robinson Airlines
Registration: N18936
MSN: 2011
Year of manufacture:1937
Total airframe hrs:19023 hours
Engine model:Wright R-1820-G102A
Fatalities:Fatalities: 16 / Occupants: 23
Other fatalities:0
Aircraft damage: Destroyed, written off
Category:Accident
Location:2,4 km SE of Utica, NY -   United States of America
Phase: En route
Nature:Passenger - Scheduled
Departure airport:Utica-Oneida County Airport, NY (UCA/KUCA)
Destination airport:Newark International Airport, NJ (EWR/KEWR)
Investigating agency: CAB
Confidence Rating: Accident investigation report completed and information captured
Narrative:
Robinson Airlines Flight 32 departed Ithaca at 11:31 for Newark, New Jersey, via Syracuse and Utica. A flight plan was filed specifying a flight according to visual flight rules. The flight proceeded in a routine manner and arrived at Utica at 13:43. At 14:08, the flight departed from Utica. The flaps were in the "full up" position for the takeoff. The aircraft became airborne in a normal manner approximately 1500 feet down the runway and climbed to an altitude of approximately 50 feet and leveled off. At this time, the landing gear was retracted and the airspeed was estimated to be 105 to 110 mph. Approximately 3000 feet from the point of takeoff parts were observed falling from the left engine and the aircraft made a shallow turn to the left. At this time, the left propeller appeared to be fully feathered. The flight continued in a left turn, slowly losing altitude until it struck a grove of trees 1.5 miles south-east of the airport. The elevation of the terrain at this point was 480 feet which is 256 feet below the elevation of the airport. The tree tops were 80 feet above the ground. First impact with the trees was made on a heading of approximately 60 degrees and as the aircraft descended through the trees, it turned anti-clockwise 180 degrees to the original heading. Following impact with the trees, the fuel tanks ruptured causing a fire which consumed the fuselage.

PROBABLE CAUSE: "Failure of the left engine shortly after take-off, coupled with increased drag due to loss of the left engine cowling, and reduced power output of the right engine resulting from the high pitch position of the right propeller."

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

Sources:

CAB File No. 1-0106
ICAO Aircraft Accident Digest No.2, Circular 24-AN/21 (21-23)

Statistics

  • 34th worst accident in 1950
  • 366th worst accident of this aircraft type
  • 193rd worst accident of this aircraft type at the time

Revision history:

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