Covington, KY Greater Cincinnati Airport Jet Crash, Nov 1967
64 Dead In TWA Jet Crash At Cincinnati; Cause Probed.
CINCINNATI, Ohio (AP) -- A team of federal investigators went to work today trying to determine why a TWA jet passenger plane crashed while approaching the Greater Cincinnati Airport Monday night, apparently killing 64 of 82 persons aboard.
"We counted up all our passengers again, and now find there were 75 passengers and seven crew members," said TWA District Manager A. B. KRUEGER. "There are 18 survivors."
"That leaves 64 persons not accounted for. I don't want to say they are all dead, but I don't have much hope for finding any more survivors," KRUEGER added.
Six of the survivors were reported in serious or critical condition in various area hospitals.
Most of the injured were rushed to St. Elizabeth Hospital in Covington, Ky. Two-thirds of the nurses at the hospital resigned last week in a dispute with the management -- but most of them reported back to work Monday night to care for the injured.
The debris-strewn crash scene is in an orchard about 1.5 miles north of the airport and not far from the spot where an American Airlines passenger plane crashed in 1965, killing 58 of 62 persons board.
Greater Cincinnati Airport is built south of the edge of a plateau above the Ohio River. The American Airlines plane smashed against the hillside 50 feet below the edge of the plateau. The TWA plane that crashed Monday night came down a few hundred yards past the edge, in plain sight of the runway lights.
The airport is on the Kentucky side of the Ohio River and about 15 miles southwest of downtown Cincinnati.
Members of the National Transport Safety Board team arrived during the night. Several of them visited the crash site in the dark, but one of them, OSCAR LAUREL, said nothing significant was found. He said the team would be fully organized today.
WOODROW McKAY, chief tower controller at the airport said "a pretty good fire broke out" after the plane hit.
More than a score of persons were waiting inside the airport restaurant for the arrival of friends and relatives.
MRS. MAUDE CUNEO of Hebron, Ky., said she saw a "great ball of fire," that it looked to her as though the plane had "exploded in the air."
The airplane was Trans World Air lines Convair -- 880 Flight 126 bound from Los Angeles to Cincinnati, Pittsburgh and Boston. It was about two hours late, TWA said, because a faulty door of another plane caused passengers to be shifted in Los Angeles to the one that crashed.
Dense smoke hung over the area and debris covered the ground at the scene of the crash. Light snow fell sporadically as ambulances hauled bodies away from the orchard. Floodlights illuminated the area. Among the first at the scene was Capt. PAUL DICKMANN, commander of the Hebron, Ky., life squad.
"We were running across the field past a man and when we went on there was a man carrying a child from the burning wreckage of the plane," DICKMANN said.
He said both men were badly hurt but told him to go on and help the others.
DICKMANN said a survivor told him he thought it was just a hard landing at first but then, "The ceiling collapsed on my wife and then the plane burst into flames."
McKAY said the plane was making a routine instrument approach. An airport spokesman said there had been no indication from the pilot of any trouble.
Purse Snatcher Makes Woman Miss Flight
MUNCIE, Ind. (AP) -- PEGGY BALL of Muncie missed Trans World Airlines flight 128 Monday because a thief snatched her purse at Los Angeles International Airport.
MRS. BALL, who could not board the plane because her ticket and all cash and travel checks were in the purse, telephoned her parents here minutes after flight 128 crashed near Greater Cincinnati Airport.
MRS. BALL was returning from Hawaii, where she visited her husband, JIM, a serviceman recuperating from wounds suffered in Vietnam.
The Portsmouth Times Ohio 1967-11-21
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