54 Years ago today: On 16 March 1969 a VIASA Douglas DC-9-32 crashed struck powerlines after takeoff from Maracaibo, Venezuela and crashed, killing all 84 occupants and 71 on the ground.
|Date:||Sunday 16 March 1969|
McDonnell Douglas DC-9-32
|Engines:||2 Pratt & Whitney JT8D-7|
|Crew:||Fatalities: 10 / Occupants: 10|
|Passengers:||Fatalities: 74 / Occupants: 74|
|Total:||Fatalities: 84 / Occupants: 84|
|Ground casualties:||Fatalities: 71|
|Aircraft fate:||Written off (damaged beyond repair)|
|Location:||Maracaibo ( Venezuela)|
|Phase:||Initial climb (ICL)|
|Nature:||International Scheduled Passenger|
|Departure airport:||Maracaibo-Grano de Oro Airport (ORO/SVMO), Venezuela|
|Destination airport:||Miami International Airport, FL (MIA/KMIA), United States of America|
VIASA flight 742 was a scheduled service from Caracas (CCS) to Miami (MIA) via Maracaibo (MAR). Prior to departure from Maracaibo, the crew performed the calculations necessary for the takeoff configuration. Faulty temperature sensors along the runway caused the crew to end up with wrong performance data for the planned takeoff. The takeoff roll was longer than planned and the airplane barely climbed, striking powerlines at an approximate height of 150 ft (50 m) above the ground, then plunged into the La Trinidad section of the city. All 84 occupants and 71 people on the ground were killed.
This accident caused the closure of the old Grano de Oro Airport and the accelerated construction and opening of the new La Chinita Airport.