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Last updated: 8 December 2021
Date:Friday 29 October 1943
Type:Silhouette image of generic DC3 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Douglas C-47A-15-DL (DC-3)
Operator:United States Army Air Force - USAAF
Registration: 42-23391
MSN: 9253
First flight: 1943
Engines: 2 Pratt & Whitney R-1830-92
Crew:Fatalities: 4 / Occupants: 5
Passengers:Fatalities: 10 / Occupants: 15
Total:Fatalities: 14 / Occupants: 20
Aircraft damage: Damaged beyond repair
Location:Hoffman-Mackall AAF, NC (HFF) (   United States of America)
Phase: En route (ENR)
Departure airport:Hoffman-Mackall AAF, NC (HFF), United States of America
Destination airport:Hoffman-Mackall AAF, NC (HFF), United States of America
The C-47 was engaged in a nighttime paratroop dropping mission. It was equipped with two fully loaded externally mounted para-racks.
While on its way to the drop zone, the no. 1 engine failed. The propeller was feathered and the pilot decided to return to Mackall AAF. He did not jettison the para-racks. The paratroopers were ordered to stay on board as the altitude (300 feet) was too low to jump. After a slightly high final approach the pilot decided to abort the approach. Full power was added on the remaining engine and the airplane banked against the no. 1 engine.
The C-47 partially stalled, the left wingtip struck treetops and the airplane cartwheeled into the ground.
After the accident it was recommended that all transport planes with very heavy loads be fueled with 100-octane fuel instead of 91-octane as in this case.

Loss of control

» Fatal Army Air Forces Aviation Accidents in the United States, 1941-1945, Vol. 2: July 1943-July 1944 / Anthony J. Mireles
» Aviation Archaeological Investigation and Research (AAIR)


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This information is not presented as the Flight Safety Foundation or the Aviation Safety Network’s opinion as to the cause of the accident. It is preliminary and is based on the facts as they are known at this time.
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Douglas DC-3

  • ca 13.000 built
  • 380th loss
  • 136th fatal accident
  • 22nd worst accident (at the time)
  • 382nd worst accident (currently)
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