Re: DC-6 Crash in Alaska

From:         rickydik@ix.netcom.com (RD Rick)
Organization: Netcom
Date:         04 Aug 96 16:44:58 
References:   1
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In <4tojl9$ofq@boris.infomagic.com> bilpat@infomagic.com writes:
>Anybody know the id of the Northern Air Cargo DC-6 that crashed in
>Alaska last week.

I don't know its tail number, but I can provide some info.

Just this month the FAA presented Northern Air Cargo with an award for
forty years of accident-free flying.  That had to be a record to end
all.

Last week one of their 14  DC-6 A/B caught fire aft of the #3 engine.
The crew tried to land at Russian Lake, near Bethel.  They made a low
pass and go-around, apparently because of pedestrians on or near the
runway.
They crashed on downwind with all four fatals.  3 crew plus jumpseat.

This is apparently the first crash of a plane equipped with a new
solid-state cockpit voice recorder.  It worked, after the NTSB got
equipment for the readout.

NAC gets their DC-6's ex-USAF from Davis-Mothan.  The mods include
modern avionics.  When a plane reaches its 10,000 hour life limit, they
part it and go get another, transferring avionics, etc.  They get a
very respectable 2,500 between overhauls of the R-2800 engines.  And
this with 100LL (lotsa lead) in lieu of 115-145.

They say there is no good replacement for the DC-6.  The Electra and
C-130 Herc can't make it out of the short, unimproved fields.  A jet -
even the 737-200 with gravel kit - is out of the question.  They do
have a 727-100 for other work however.

RD