Crash site Bahrain airport, Bahrain
Airline Air France 
Aircraft Douglas DC-4  –  F-BBDM  –  Ciel de Gascogne 
Route Saigon  –  Karachi  –  Bahrain  –   Paris
Crew 8  –  5 survivors
Passengers 45  –  8 survivors


The crash

The plane was on a scheduled flight from from Saigon to Paris and had departed at 16:43 from Karachi airport, Pakistan. The last contact with the plane was at 21:52 when the Bahrain control tower gave permisson to land. A few minutes later the plane crashed into the water close to the airport. The first rescuers arrived on the crash site about 4 hours later where they picked up the survivors.
The crash investigators concluded that the probable cause of the accident was failure of the pilot in command to adopt the timed approach procedure to the prevailing conditions.

On 12 June 1950 – two days before this crash – a similar Air France plane crashed at almost the same spot.
There were similarities between the two accidents both having taken place at the same time in bad atmospheric conditions.
Many years later (in the 1990es) further investigations attributed both crashes to extreme weather conditions in that particular area (microbursts).


The mail

The plane carried some mail and at least a part of it was recovered. It seems as if the mail was brought to Paris for further processing.  French handstamps and labels are noted.
According to Nierinck mail from this crash is rather common, but I have seen very little mail from the crash.
The only Nordic item I have recorded is the cover to Denmark illustrated below.





Examples of mail


Cover from North Vietnam postmarked HAIPHONG 13 -6 1950 addressed to Copenhagen, Denmark. Recovered from water and stamps washed off. French crash handstamp COURRIER ACCIDENTE (Mail accident).
Danish Post & Tele Museum Collection.