This 789-page document gives you a close look at the people, places, conditions, crew and individual Pan Am aircraft that wound up in trouble. This accumulated study of 46 accidents, from official accident investigations, takes you back to the dramatic scene of all of these accidents.
The accident investigations are surprising and compelling. The loss of life was tragic but the situations surrounding these unforeseen events are intriguing and mesmerizing to read. This document by RareAviation.com allows long-forgotten Pan American flying history to the surface by revealing company policies and piloting procedures long forgotten.
This is a Must-Have Document For Any Person Interested in Pan Am History.
This is the only document that I have ever seen that accumulates all of the official investigations about Pan Am accidents into one document and provides you with an extreme level of detail about each accident.
A Small Sampling of the Intensely Interesting And Strange Accident Stories Inside
Excerpt – During a routine flight at 12,000 feet, From New York to Buenos Aires, Argentina, the main cabin door of a Boeing 377 opened suddenly during flight and blew a woman passenger in seat 33 out the door. Her body was never found.
Excerpt – A Pan American DC-3 while landing at San Salvador landed on a wet grass strip with a steep ravine located at the far end of the runway. The aircraft struck the ground hard while attempting a normal landing and bounced 540 feet before making contact again on the wet grass strip. As the plane neared the ravine, the Captain had the idea to initiate a ground loop to avoid falling into the ravine. The tail wheel was unlocked, and right brake and left throttle were applied. You’ll have to read the full survey to find out if the plane went over the cliff or not.
Excerpt – Prior to departure from California, the Hawaii Clipper executed its company-mandated policy for long over-water flights. This flight would be from Alameda, California to Manila, Philippine Islands.
Prior to departure from Alameda, the aircraft was inspected, and routine service procedure, known as “long airplane service” and “long engine service” was carried out. The “shore run-up report” and engineering flight tests showed satisfactory operation. The Company’s routing procedure calls for a test flight of at least three hours on the day preceding departure from Alameda. This flight is conducted by the same crew scheduled to make the trip.
During this flight an emergency landing is made and a routine “abandon ship” drill is carried out. This drill consists of inflating the life raft and getting it over-side, with the crew, emergency equipment and rations aboard. An emergency radio is set up and communications with shore stations is established.
The flight proceeded with stops at Honolulu, Midway, and Guam. At Wake Island, the Hawaii Clipper met the Philippine Clipper which was eastbound, both aircraft making a scheduled overnight stop at that point. Testimony from members of the Philippine Clipper crew indicated that the entire crew of the Hawaii Clipper were in the best of spirits and that they reported a comfortable and normal trip to that time.
During the leg from Guam to Manilla, radio contact with the flying boat was lost and an emergency search was ordered. The Army transport ship “Meigs” was only 109 miles from the last reported position and made it’s way to the vicinity. A large search was conducted by Navy destroyers and submarines as well and what they discovered was surprising.
Included Aircraft: Sikorsky S-43 Flying Boat, Sikorsky S-42-B Flying Boat, Martin Model 130 Flying Boat, Douglas DC-3, Boeing Model 314, Pilgrim 100-B, Lockheed Constellation, Douglas DC-4, Convair 240, Boeing 377 Stratocruiser, Boeing 707, Boeing 727, Boeing 747.
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