Indian Airlines Flight 171

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Indian Airlines Flight 171
Indian Airlines Caravelle Groves.jpg
An Indian Airlines Caravelle, sister ship to the accident aircraft
Date 12 October 1976
Summary In-flight fire due to engine failure
Site Bombay, India
Aircraft type Sud Aviation Caravelle
Operator Indian Airlines
Registration VT-DWN
Flight origin Bombay-Santacruz Airport
Destination Madras Airport
Passengers 89
Crew 6
Fatalities 95(all)
Injuries 0
Survivors 0

Indian Airlines Flight 171 was a Caravelle that crashed while attempting an emergency landing at Bombay Airport on 12 October 1976, killing all 95 persons on board. Metal fatigue in a compressor-disc had caused the casing to burst, cutting fuel lines and starting an engine fire, which sent the aircraft out of control.

The crash[edit]

Flight 171 was a scheduled domestic passenger flight from Bombay (Mumbai) to Madras (Chennai). A Boeing aircraft was originally supposed to make the flight but it developed engine trouble and was replaced with a Sud Aviation Caravelle.[1] Shortly after takeoff from runway 27, Flight 171 suffered a No. 2 engine failure. The crew of Flight 171 immediately turned back to attempt an emergency landing on Bombay Airport's runway 09. With its undercarriage down approximately 1000 yards from the end of the runway and while at an altitude of 300 feet, the aircraft suffered a loss of control and plummeted into the ground. Everyone on board Flight 171 perished in the accident.[2][3]


A fatigue crack in the tenth stage compressor disc caused a power plant failure which was followed by the bursting of the compressor casing and the cutting of fuel lines that spanned the structure. This caused an intense in-flight fire in the engine bay. It is believed the fire consumed the Caravelle's supply of hydraulic fluid and this was the cause of the aircraft going out of control.[4]

Notable victims[edit]

South Indian actress Rani Chandra died in the accident.[citation needed]


  1. ^ Jet crash kills 95 in Bombay
  2. ^ Aircraft accident Sud Aviation SE-210 Caravelle VIN VT-DWN Bombay-Santacruz Airport
  3. ^ Air crash in India kills 95
  4. ^ Gero, David (1996). Aviation Disasters Second Edition. Patrick Stephens Limited. p. 139.

External links[edit]