Viasa Flight 742

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Viasa Flight 742
A DC-9-30 similar to the accident aircraft
Accident summary
Date March 16, 1969 (1969-03-16)
Summary Faulty runway temperature sensors, overweight
Site Maracaibo, Venezuela
Passengers 74
Crew 10
Fatalities 155 (84 on board + 71 on the ground)
Survivors 0
Aircraft type McDonnell Douglas DC-9-32
Operator Viasa
Registration YV-C-AVD
Flight origin Maracaibo Airport, Maracaibo
Stopover Miami International Airport, Miami, Florida
Destination Los Angeles International Airport, Inglewood, California

Viasa Flight 742 was an international, scheduled passenger flight from Maracaibo, Venezuela to Los Angeles International Airport with an immediate stopover in Miami International Airport that crashed on 16 March 1969. After taking off, the DC-9-30 hit a series of power lines before crashing into the La Trinidad section of Maracaibo. All 84 people on board perished, as well as 71 on the ground.

The DC-9 involved in the crash was on lease from Avensa and had only been in service a few weeks.[1]

The cause of the crash was attributed to faulty sensors along the runway and the take-off calculations made from the erroneous information they had provided, which resulted in an aircraft overloaded by more than 5,000 pounds[2] for the prevailing conditions. Only two days after the crash, Venezuela's Public Works Minister ascribed runway length as a contributing factor in the disaster.[3]

When Flight 742 crashed it was the first loss of a DC-9-30, and it remains the deadliest accident involving that class of aircraft. It was also the deadliest accident in Venezuela until West Caribbean Airways Flight 708 (operated by a McDonnell Douglas MD-80, the DC-9's successor aircraft) crashed over thirty-six years later. At the time, the crash was the world's deadliest civil air disaster.[4]

One of the people who perished in the Viasa Flight 742 crash was San Francisco Giants pitching prospect Néstor Chávez, who was returning to California. [5]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Accident description for YV-C-AVD at the Aviation Safety Network
  2. ^ Crashed plane said overloaded
  3. ^ Gero, David (1996). Aviation Disasters Second Edition. Patrick Stephens Limited. p. 88. 
  4. ^ Disasters: The Worst Ever
  5. ^ Zimniuch, Fran (2007). The Untimely Deaths of Baseball's Stars and Journeymen. First Taylor Trade Publishing. pp. 23–24. 

Coordinates: 10°34′00″N 71°44′00″W / 10.5667°N 71.7333°W / 10.5667; -71.7333