Date & Time: Aug 31, 1950 at 0203 LT
Operator:
Registration:
N6004C
Flight Phase:
Flight
Survivors:
No
Site:
Desert
Schedule:
Bombay – Cairo – Rome – Geneva – Paris – Shannon – Gander – New York
MSN:
2636
YOM:
1950
Flight number:
TW903
Country:
Egypt
Region:
Africa
Crew on board:
7
Crew fatalities:
7
Pax on board:
48
Pax fatalities:
48
Other fatalities:
0
Total fatalities:
55
Captain / Total flying hours:
10664
Captain / Total hours on type:
864
Copilot / Total flying hours:
6355
Copilot / Total hours on type:
363
Aircraft flight hours:
1100
Circumstances:
The four engine aircraft christened 'Star of Maryland' left Cairo-Faruk Airport at 0135LT and was cleared to climb to 14,000 feet. While flying to the northwest at an altitude of 10,000 feet, the engine number three caught fire. The propeller was feathered but the crew was unable to extinguish the fire. The captain informed ground about the situation and was cleared to return to Cairo. Few minutes later, the situation became critical and the fire spread to the right wing. In such conditions, the captain decided to attempt a night emergency landing in a desert area located about 100 km northwest of Cairo. But shortly before landing, the engine number three separated from the wing and the aircraft plunged into the earth and disintegrated on impact. All 55 occupants were killed, among them tourists, engineers and US diplomats.
Probable cause:
The Board determines that the probable cause of this accident was the failure of the rear row master rod bearing causing an uncontrolled fire which precipitated a crash landing.
The following findings were reported:
- The rear row master rod bearing of No. 3 engine failed during the climb to cruising altitude,
- This bearing failure precipitated a fire in the No. 3 power plant, the No. 3 propeller was feathered,
- The aircraft was turned back toward Cairo and the burning engine shortly fell free,
- Fire continued in the right wing and an attempted night landing on the desert resulted in destruction of the aircraft.
Final Report:
N6004C.pdf515.73 KB