Date & Time: Mar 28, 1954 at 1500 LT
Type of aircraft:
Consolidated PBY-5A Catalina
Tromsø – Bjørnøya – Isfjord – Longyearbyen – Ny-Ålesund – Hopen – Tromsø
Crew on board:
Pax on board:
The airplane was carrying one passenger and eight crew members of the 333rd Squadron on a mail dropping mission out from Tromsø. After an uneventful dropping mission at Bjørnøya Island, Isfjord Radio, Longyearbyen, Ny-Ålesund and Hopen, in the Svalbard region, the crew was returning to Tromsø when he decided to make a last low pass over the Bjørnøya station. While flying at a height of 40 meters in snow falls, the pilot-in-command completed a turn to the right when the right wing struck the ground. Out of control, the airplane crashed and disintegrated in one meter of snow. A radio operator was rescued while eight other occupants were killed.
It was determined that the accident was caused by the aircraft losing altitude through a sideslip, possibly due to the pilot losing spatial awareness in the poor visibility.