Date & Time: Mar 1, 1938 at 2130 LT
Type of aircraft:
Douglas DC-2
Operator:
Registration:
NC13789
Flight Phase:
Flight
Survivors:
No
Schedule:
San Francisco – Winslow
MSN:
1299
YOM:
1934
Flight number:
TW327
Crew on board:
3
Crew fatalities:
3
Pax on board:
6
Pax fatalities:
6
Other fatalities:
0
Total fatalities:
9
Circumstances:
Aircraft ledft San Francisco Airport around 1930LT in good weather conditions. Two hours later, crew encountered deteriorating weather conditions and requested ATC to divert to Los Angeles. At this time, storm activity and icing conditions were reported by the crew. Two minutes later, the aircraft crashed on Mt Buena Vista located in the Yosemite National Park, near Wawona. SAR operations did not find any trace of the aircraft. Walkers eventually found the debris and all dead bodies on 12JUN1938.
Crew:
John Graves, pilot,
C. W. Wallace, copilot,
Martha Mae Wilson, stewardess.
Passengers:
Mr. and Mrs. Walts,
Mr. V. Krause,
Jay Tracy Dirlam,
Mary Louise Dirlam,
M. H. Salisbury, a TWA pilot.
Probable cause:
According to the US Bureau of Air Commerce, the pilot must have temporarily lost his bearings due to a change in the direction of the wind and a sharp increase in its velocity, unknown to him, leading to confusion as to his position relative to the Fresno radio range course. The subsequent crash occurred in darkness and, apparently, in an area of heavy snowfall. This resulted in a controlled flight into terrain (CFIT).