1956 Grand Canyon mid-air collision facts for kids
An artist's recreation of the collision.
|Date||June 30, 1956|
|Site||21,000 feet above the Grand Canyon|
|Total fatalities||128 (all)|
The 1956 Grand Canyon was a mid-air collision that happened on Saturday, 30 June 1956 at 11:31 am Mountain Standard Time. A United Airlines plane running as United Airlines Flight 718 hit another airplane owned by Trans World Airlines (TWA), operating as Trans World Airlines Flight 2. The aircraft involved was a Douglas DC-7 and a Lockheed L-1049 Super Constellation. The crash happened over the Grand Canyon within the boundaries of Grand Canyon National Park. All 128 passengers and crew on board both flights died in the collision. The crash was the first commercial airline crash with over 100 deaths, and led to lots of changes in flight control in the United States. The crash site today is considered as a National Historic Landmark.
A total of two airplanes were involved in the collision. These planes were:
United Airlines Flight 718 - nicknamed Mainliner Vancouver, the aircraft was a Douglas DC-7. The airplane had an aircraft registration of N6324C. The aircraft carried a total of 58 people (53 passengers and 5 crew members). The aircraft was flying under the orders of pilot Robert F. Shirley, co-pilot Robert W. Harms,and flight engineer Gerard Fiore.
Trans World Airlines Flight 2 - nicknamed Star of the Seine, the aircraft was a Lockheed L-1049 Super Constellation. The aircraft had an aircraft registration of N6902C. The aircraft carried 70 people (64 passengers and 6 crew members). The aircraft was flying under the orders of pilot Jack S. Gandy, co-pilot James H. Ritner, and flight engineer Forrest D. Breyfogle.
At about 11:31 AM MST, the track of both airplanes intersected over the canyon, and they hit each other.
The burial site and memorial for the civilians on board TWA Flight 2. The memorial site is located in Flagstaff, Arizona.
A photograph of the TWA funeral by Life Magazine in 1956
Images for kids
1956 Grand Canyon mid-air collision Facts for Kids. Kiddle Encyclopedia.