1955 Altensteig mid-air collision

The Altensteig mid-air collision was on the 11 August 1955 when two United States Air Force Fairchild C-119G Flying Boxcars collided and crashed three miles from Altensteig in West Germany.[1] The aircraft were part of a formation of nine C-119s flying a training mission from Stuttgart-Echterdingen airfield, West Germany with troops from the United States Seventh Army.[1] With all 66 on board both aircraft killed, it was, at the time, the worst air crash in Germany.[1]

1955 Altensteig mid-air collision
A Fairchild C-119 similar to both aircraft lost
Accident
Date11 August 1955 (1955-08-11)
SummaryMid-air collision
SiteNear Altensteig, West Germany
Total fatalities66
First aircraft
TypeFairchild C-119G Flying Boxcar
OperatorUnited States Air Force
Registration53-3222
Flight originStuttgart Airport
DestinationStuttgart Airport
Passengers14
Crew5
Fatalities19
Second aircraft
TypeFairchild C-119G Flying Boxcar
OperatorUnited States Air Force
Registration53-7841
Flight originStuttgart Airport
DestinationStuttgart Airport
Passengers41
Crew6
Fatalities47

Accident

Just after 14:00 one of the aircraft on the right of a formation of three developed engine problems just after take off when it was around 4,000 feet, it lost height then climbed abruptly into the second aircraft colliding in mid-air.[1] The first aircraft, serial number 53-7841, crashed and disintegrated with the loss of all 19 on board.[1] The second aircraft 53-3222 continued for a while before it also crashed about 30 miles from Stuttgart in a wooded area and burst into flames, killing all 47 on board.[1]

Helicopters were sent to the scene, supported by fire engines and people from local villages to help with the search for survivors, none were found and the fireman were still fighting the blaze into the evening.[1]

Aircraft

The two Fairchild C-119G Flying Boxcars were twin-engined military transport aircraft from the 60th Troop-Carrier Wing based at Rhein-Main airfield in West Germany.[1]

References

Notes
  1. "Troop Planes Collide - 66 Americans Killed". The Times (53297). London. 12 August 1955. p. 8.

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