Date & Time: Mar 31, 1931 at 1045 LT
Type of aircraft:
Fokker F10
Operator:
Registration:
NC999E
Flight Phase:
Flight
Survivors:
No
Schedule:
Kansas City – Wichita – Amarillo – Albuquerque – Winslow – Los Angeles
MSN:
1063
Flight number:
TWA599
Crew on board:
2
Crew fatalities:
2
Pax on board:
6
Pax fatalities:
6
Other fatalities:
0
Total fatalities:
8
Captain / Total flying hours:
2000
Circumstances:
Aircraft left Kansas City Airport at 0915LT bound for Wichita. At 1022LT, the copilot informed his base about his position, south of Emporia. At this time, weather conditions were poor with snow falls, drizzle, icing conditions, clouds and mist. While cruising, aircraft went out of control, stalled and crashed in an open field. The aircraft was destroyed by impact forces and all eight occupants were killed, among them the US football player and trainer Knute Rockne.
Crew:
Robert Fry, captain,
Jesse Mathias, copilot.
Probable cause:
The right wing severed in flight, maybe following an excessive ice accumulation. The aircraft was probably in a spiral dive when it broke up. An excessive speed almost certainly was a contributory cause of the accident, probably not through control mishandling but through flutter. By late June 1931, 20 of the 36 grounded F-10As were back in service, and five others would follow. There was no rejoicing.