Crash site Don Muang airport, Bangkok, Thailand
Airline KLM Royal Dutch Airlines
Aircraft Lockheed L-749 Constellation  –  PH-TFF  –  Venlo
Route Amsterdam – Rome – Athens – Cairo – Bahrain – Karachi – Bangkok – Kuala Lumpur – Jakarta – Darwin – Sydney
Crew 10  –  10 survivors
Passengers 34  –  34 survivors


The crash

The plane took off from Karachi at 21:11 in the evening. On the approach to the airport a loud noise was heard and the airplane began to vibrate violently. This was caused by the failure of one of the propeller blades of No. 3 engine and soon the engine broke free from the plane and caught fire. The airplane landed normally, but before it had come to a complete stop the right landing-gear collapsed and the fire spread quickly. Due to the quick response by the airport firefighters all crew and passengers could leave the plane safely.
The crash investigators concluded that the probable cause of the crash was failure of a propeller blade.


The mail

On board the plane was a large amount of mail from the Netherlands. Some mail from other European countries and the the United States was also carried. But most of the mail was destroyed in the crash.
Recovered mail destined for Thailand, Japan, Hong-Kong, Taiwan, Indonesia, New Guinea, Australia and New Zealand are known. Quite many different crash markings have been recorded from these countries including manuscript notes, handstamps, small labels and explanatory letters.
The only recorded Nordic item from this crash is the cover from Sweden shown below.




Examples of mail

Cover from Sweden with metermark GÖTEBORG 19.3.52 to Sydney, Australia. The cover was forwarded with an explanatory letter from the G.P.O. Sydney.
Thiesen Collection.