1939 Pan Am Sikorsky S-43 crash

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1939 Pan Am Sikorsky S-43 crash
Sikorsky S-43 NC-16925 (5996028804).jpg
A Sikorsky S-43
Accident summary
Date August 13, 1939 (1939-08-13)
Summary Engine failure resulting in a loss of control
Site Guanabara Bay, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
Passengers 12
Crew 4
Fatalities 14
Survivors 2
Aircraft type Sikorsky S-43B
Operator Pan Am
Registration NC16933
Flight origin Miami International Airport, Miami, Florida, U.S.
Destination Santos Dumont Airport, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

The 1939 Pan Am Sikorsky S-43 crash occurred on August 13, 1939, when a Pan Am Sikorsky S-43B aircraft en route from Miami to Rio de Janeiro crashed into Rio's Guanabara Bay, killing 14 of the 16 people on board.[1]

Flight history[edit]

The aircraft involved was a three-year-old Sikorsky S-43B airliner registered NC16933. It had first flown in 1936, and had accumulated a total of 3,650 flight hours during its career.[2]

The aircraft took off from Miami on a scheduled international passenger flight to Rio de Janeiro, with many stopovers across the Caribbean and South America. As it neared its destination, the aircraft circled Rio in preparation for a normal approach. As it was circling, however, the left engine lost power, putting the aircraft into a descending left yaw turn. As the yaw grew sharper, the pitch angle also steepened until the aircraft struck a caisson and crashed into Guanabara Bay, about one kilometer from Rio's Santos Dumont Airport. Of the twelve passengers and four crew members, only two passengers survived.[3]

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