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Accident description
Last updated: 10 December 2017
Status:Final
Date:Saturday 31 August 1940
Time:14:41
Type:Silhouette image of generic DC3 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Douglas DC-3-313
Operator:Pennsylvania-Central Airlines
Registration: NC21789
C/n / msn: 2188
First flight: 1940
Total airframe hrs:565
Engines: 2 Wright R-1820-G102A
Crew:Fatalities: 4 / Occupants: 4
Passengers:Fatalities: 21 / Occupants: 21
Total:Fatalities: 25 / Occupants: 25
Airplane damage: Destroyed
Airplane fate: Written off (damaged beyond repair)
Location:near Lovettsville, VA (   United States of America)
Phase: En route (ENR)
Nature:Domestic Scheduled Passenger
Departure airport:Washington-Hoover Field, DC, United States of America
Destination airport:Pittsburgh (unknown airport), PA, United States of America
Flightnumber: 19
Narrative:
A Douglas DC-3 passenger plane, operating Pennsylvania-Central Airlines Trip 19, was destroyed when it crashed near Lovettsville, VA, USA. All 25 occupants were killed. One of the passengers killed was Senator Ernest Lundeen (62, Minnesota).
Trip 19 was a scheduled service from x to y with several intermediate stops. The airplane took off from Washington-Hoover Field, DC at 14:21. Twenty minutes after departure the airplane flew into dark storm clouds near Short Hill Mountain. A lightning discharge occurred near the airplane, after which it descended out of control. It struck the ground on the edge of an alfalfa field in a nose-down attitude.

Probable Cause:

PROBABLE CAUSE: "Upon the basis of the foregoing findings of probable fact and the entire record in this investigation, we find that the probable cause of the accident to aircraft NC 21789, which occurred at Lovettsville, Virginia, on August 31, 1940, was the disabling of the pilots by a severe lightning discharge in the immediate neighborhood of the plane, with resulting loes of control."

Classification:
Lightningstrike
Loss of control

Sources:
» CAB Report


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Douglas DC-3

  • ca 13.000 built
  • 17th loss
  • 10th fatal accident
  • The worst accident (at the time)
  • 112th worst accident (currently)
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