ASN Aircraft accident Vought-Sikorsky VS-44 NC41880 Botwood Seaplane Base, NL
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Status:Accident investigation report completed and information captured
Date:Saturday 3 October 1942
Type:Silhouette image of generic vs44 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Vought-Sikorsky VS-44
Operator:American Export Airlines
Registration: NC41880
MSN: 4401
First flight: 1942
Engines: 4 Pratt & Whitney R-1830-S1C3-G
Crew:Fatalities: 5 / Occupants: 11
Passengers:Fatalities: 6 / Occupants: 26
Total:Fatalities: 11 / Occupants: 37
Aircraft damage: Damaged beyond repair
Location:Botwood Seaplane Base, NL (   Canada)
Phase: Takeoff (TOF)
Nature:International Scheduled Passenger
Departure airport:Botwood Seaplane Base, NL, Canada
Destination airport:Shannon Airport (SNN/EINN), Ireland
Flightnumber: 71
Porpoised and crashed on takeoff.
The flying boat operated on a flight from New York's LaGuardia Marine Air Terminal to Shannon, Ireland with an en route stop at Botwood, Canada.

Probable Cause:

PROBABLE CAUSE: "Inadvertent actuation of the wing flaps to the full 35° down position during the take-off run, thereby rendering the aircraft excessively nose-heavy and uncontrollable.

Accident investigation:

Investigating agency: CAB
Status: Investigation completed
Accident number: final report
Download report: Final report

Loss of control

» CAB report


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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 Botwood Seaplane Base, NL to Shannon Airport as the crow flies is 3196 km (1998 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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