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Air India Flight 245
Accident summary
Date November 3, 1950
Type Heavy weather
Site Mont Blanc
Passengers 40
Crew 8
Fatalities 48 (all)
Survivors 0
Aircraft type Lockheed L-749A Constellation
Operator Air India
Tail number VT-CQP
Flight origin Bombay
Destination London

Air India Flight 245 was a scheduled Air India passenger flight that crashed at Mont Blanc in France on 3 November 1950.

Contents

The accident

On the morning of 3 November 1950 Air India Flight 245 called Malabar Princess a Lockheed L-749A Constellation (registered VT-CQP) carrying 40 passengers and 8 crew was flying on the Bombay-Cairo-Geneva-London route crashed on the Mont Blanc killing all on board.[1][2][3]

The control towers at Grenoble and Geneva received a report, "I am vertical with Voiron, at 4700 meters altitude." at 10:43 a.m. from the pilot. That is the last transmission from the aircraft before it crashed.

The "Malabar Princess" hit the face of the Rochers de la Tournette 4,677 m (15,344 ft) on the side of the Mont Blanc.[2] Rescue parties were sent out on November 5, after the stormy weather had receded. The debris littering the French face of the summit was located by a Swiss plane.[2] There were no survivors.

Sixteen years later Air India Flight 101 crashed in almost the exact spot.

Pop-Culture References

  • In the 2001 movie Amélie, the title character reads a newspaper article about alpinists finding, by chance, a mailbag on Mont-Blanc and later realizing it came from the Malabar Princess that crashed 40 years earlier. This news inspires Amélie to do good to the lonely concierge, by faking a final love letter from her late husband, supposedly found inside that mailbag.
  • The 2004 movie Malabar Princess[4] is about a young boy called Tom, who is sent to live with his grandfather in the French Alps after his mother dies in a skiing accident. He becomes friends with Benoit, and the two search for the remains of the Malabar Princess.[5]

Statistics

  • 6th loss of a Lockheed L-749
  • 2nd worst accident involving a Lockheed L-749 (at the time)
  • 3rd worst accident involving a Lockheed L-749 (currently)
  • The worst accident in France (at the time)
  • 13th worst accident in France (currently)[6]

References

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