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Accident Report Detail

Wein Consolidated Airlines, Inc., Fairchild F-27B, N4905

Executive Summary

A Wien Consolidated Airlines, Inc., Fairchild F-27B, K4905, crashed at Pedro Bay, Alaska, at approximately 0936 Alaskan standard time, December 2, 1968. The 36 passengers and three crewmembers died in the accident and the aircraft was destroyed.

The aircraft vas operating as Flight 55 from Anchorage to Dillingham, Alaska, with en route stops at Iliamna, Big Mountain, and King Salmon, Alaska. Flight 55 had been cleared for an approach to Iliamna Airport and as it neared the vicinity of Pedro Bay, witnesses on the ground observed a large cloud of black smoke and fire behind the aircraft. They stated that shortly after that, they say pieces separate from the aircraft and the aircraft descend in a spin. The weather at the time of the accident was clear with good visibility. High winds were reported on the ground in the Pedro Bay area.

Investigation shoved that the right outer wing, the empennage, portions of the left wing, and other components of the aircraft structure had separated from the aircraft in flight.

Probable Cause

The Board detemines that the probable cause of this accident was an in-flight structural failure caused by an encounter with severe-to-extreme turbulence. This turbulence was not forecast and its presence was not known to the flightcrew. The failure occurred in an area of the right wing (WS 197) which had been weakened to an indeterminate degree by pre-existing fatigue cracks.

Accident Location: Iliamna , AK   Pedro Bay
Accident Date: 12/2/1968
Accident ID: 79349

Date Adopted: 7/22/1970
NTSB Number: AAR-70-16
NTIS Number: PB-195300

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