New York City, NY Airliner Crashes On Takeoff, Sep 1970
PLANE CRASH KILLS 11.
New York (UPI) -- Kennedy International Airport was preparing for its crunch of late afternoon flights. KEVIN JENNINGS glanced into the sky at a routine sight -- a plane taking off.
Suddenly he saw "shots .... sparks" and the DC8 banked and "disappeared into the ground."
Eleven crew members including seven stewardesses were killed when the Trans International Airline (TIA) charter, being ferried to Washington to pick up 250 young European passengers, crashed near Jamaica Bay and exploded into flames. There were no survivors.
The airport was closed for more than two hours while firemen doused the flames. Extra foam used in fighting aircraft fires was rushed from LaGuardia Airport. More than a dozen incoming flights were diverted to Boston while outgoing flights had to wait at Kennedy terminals.
GEORGE A. VAN EPPS, chief of the National Transportation Board's Bureau of Safety, said the voice and flight recordings aboard the jet had been recovered. "This should being significent evidence," VAN EPPS said. "As soon as we get the answers to the very steep roll and what witnesses described, federal investigators should have more concrete evidence as to what caused the crash." VAN EPPS said in a report should be made in about two weeks.
One witness, SAFDAR RASHID of Pakistan, who had just arrived on another flight, said, "It wavered, it staggared, it fell off on its left side and crashed nose down, exploding on impact. It was a sheet of flame and that was the end. It took no more than six seconds."
A spokesman for TIA, a subsidiary of Transamerica Corp., said, it was the first crash in the company's 22 year history. TIA is a supplemental airline specializing in international charter and military contract flights.
The 250 passengers to be picked up in Washington were young people from Europe who had spend the summer working in the United States. They were headed back home.
The dead, all from the San Francisco area, were identified as Capt. JOSEPH MAY, First Officer JOHN LOEFFLER, Engineer DONALD NEELEY, Navigator WARREN McNAUGHTON, and the seven stewardesses, IRMGARD RUSSO, DIANNE BEASLEY, BARBARA LEWIS, JULIET LOREA, MARGARETA LEWENHAUPT, MARCIA HANIFIN and LINDA BRENNAN.
The Daily Courier Connellsville Pennsylvania 1970-09-09