ASN Aircraft accident Douglas C-47 (DC-3) HC-AUC Banos
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Date:Thursday 2 May 1974
Type:Silhouette image of generic DC3 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Douglas C-47 (DC-3)
Operator:Aerotaxis Ecuatorianos SA - ATESA
Registration: HC-AUC
First flight:
Crew:Fatalities: 2 / Occupants: 3
Passengers:Fatalities: 18 / Occupants: 22
Total:Fatalities: 20 / Occupants: 25
Aircraft damage: Destroyed
Aircraft fate: Written off (damaged beyond repair)
Location:7 km (4.4 mls) S of Banos (   Ecuador)
Crash site elevation: 3414 m (11201 feet) amsl
Phase: En route (ENR)
Nature:Domestic Scheduled Passenger
Departure airport:Pastaza Airport (PTZ/SESM), Ecuador
Destination airport:Ambato-Chachoan Airport (ATF/SEAM), Ecuador
The aircraft departed Pastaza at 19:13 and climbed to an altitude of FL115. The crew continued over the Banos canyon at FL115, the minimum safety altitude being FL125. The left wing of the aircraft struck the side of the Tungurahua Volcano, shrouded by a low layer of stratus clouds, and separated. The aircraft crashed out of control and was found the following day at 11200 feet.

Probable Cause:

PROBABLE CAUSE: Failure to climb to the minimum safety altitude; failure to maintain a 275deg heading from Rio Negro to Banos; overconfidence of the pilot-in-command; possible distraction of the flight crew due to the presence of a tourist guide in the cockpit.


photo of Douglas-C-47-HC-AUC
accident date: 02-05-1974
type: Douglas C-47 (DC-3)
registration: HC-AUC

This map shows the airport of departure and the intended destination of the flight. The line between the airports does not display the exact flight path.
Distance from Pastaza Airport to Ambato-Chachoan Airport as the crow flies is 65 km (41 miles).
Accident location: Approximate; accuracy within a few kilometers.

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
  • 4163rd loss
  • 1648th fatal accident
  • 209th worst accident (at the time)
  • 226th worst accident (currently)
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  • 5th worst accident (at the time)
  • 17th worst accident (currently)
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