Over Nantucket, MA – November 4, 1970

Over Nantucket, Massachusetts – November 4, 1970

     On the evening of November 4, 1970, Pan American World Airways Flight 114 departed John F. Kennedy International Airport in New York bound for Orly Airport in Paris, France. 

     The aircraft was a Boeing 747-121 (N739PA) with 148 passengers and 15 crew aboard.

     The aircraft had been cleared to 31,000 feet, and as it climbed to 27,000 feet turbulence had been minimal. 

     At 9:46 p.m., while passing over Nantucket Island at an altitude of 27,000 feet, the aircraft suddenly experienced severe turbulence that lasted about four minutes. Although the seatbelt sign was on, and had been on since takeoff , 21 passengers and 2 stewardesses sustained injuries – some of them serious.

     At 10:07 p.m. Flight 114 requested clearance back to J.F. K. Airport, and landed on Runway 31R at 11:39 p.m.

     In the NTSB investigation report of the incident it was stated in part, “The national Transportation Safety Board determines that the probable cause of this accident was the entry of the aircraft into an area of moderate to briefly severe turbulence associated with convective activity while numerous occupants were unsecured by seatbelts, even though the seatbelt sign was lighted.”        


     National Transportation Safety Board Accident Investigation Report, #NTSB-AAR-72-14, File# 1-0001, Adopted May 3, 1972  

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