Date & Time: Sep 22, 1978 at 1215 LT
Type of aircraft:
Lockheed P-3 Orion
Operator:
Registration:
152757
Flight Phase:
Flight
Flight Type:
Military
Survivors:
No
Site:
Plain
Schedule:
Brunswick - Trenton
MSN:
185-5199
YOM:
1966
Crew on board:
8
Crew fatalities:
8
Pax on board:
0
Pax fatalities:
0
Other fatalities:
0
Total fatalities:
8
Circumstances:
The four engine airplane departed Brunswick NAS, Maine, at 1205LT on a flight to Trenton, Ontario, where it was dispatched to an airshow. While climbing, the crew encountered poor weather conditions with stormy weather when the engine n°1 went in whirl mode and detached. 11 feet of the left wing separated and struck the left horizontal stabilizer that was torn off as well. Out of control, the airplane entered a dive and partially disintegrated before crashing near Poland. All eight occupants were killed.
Crew:
Lt Cdr Francis William Dupont Jr.,
Lt Jg Donald Edward Merz,
Lt Jg George D. Nuttelman,
Lt Jg Ernest A. Smith,
Aw2 James Allen Piepkorn,
Awan Paul G. Schulz,
Ad3 Robert Lewis Phillips Jr.,
Adc Larry Miller.
Probable cause:
It was determined that the engine went into a whirl mode which corresponds to a low frequency vibration in the engine mounts that can cause the separation of the engine in flight. It is believed that weather turbulences may affect the proper functioning of the engine.