Date & Time: Mar 6, 1962 at 1415 LT
Type of aircraft:
Douglas C-47 Skytrain (DC-3)
Scheduled Revenue Flight
Cape Town – Oudtshoorn – George – Plettenberg Bay – Port Elizabeth – Grahamstown – Queenstown – Collondale
Crew on board:
Pax on board:
Captain / Total hours on type:
According to the copilot the aircraft flew below the clouds at about 300-500 ft above the ground. It was the pilot-in-command's intention to fly through the Katberg Pass below cloud and as the aircraft approached the mountains the cloud ceiling became lower and the pilot was faced with a critical situation. He called for METO (maximum except takeoff) power and in an attempt to clear the hills the right wing first made contact with the trees and then the right engine propeller cut into the rising ground. The aircraft came to rest against a rock face approximately 250 yd from the initial point of impact with the trees and approximately 500 ft from the top of the hill. Two crew members were killed while five other occupants were injured.
The accident was attributed to an error of judgement on the part of the pilot-in-command who attempted low visual flight, beneath the cloud base, near mountains in deteriorating weather conditions.