Aerolineas Argentinas Flight 322 Crashes

Aerolineas Argentinas Flight 322 was the flight number of a scheduled international passenger flight from Buenos Aires to Trinidad and New York City via Campinas, Brazil, which crashed and caught fire on November 23, 1961, shortly after takeoff from the Viracopos-Campinas International Airport, with the deaths of all 40 passengers and 12 crew on board. The flight was being operated by a Comet 4C jetliner, registration LV-AHR.

The Comet 4C operated on a flight from Buenos Aires to Trinidad. It took off from the São Paulo (VCP), an intermediate stop, at 05:38. After reaching an altitude of about 100m the aircraft lost altitude, collided with a eucalyptus forest and crashed.

PROBABLE CAUSE: "It was presumed that the co-pilot was under flight instruction. If such was the case, the instructor, who was pilot-in-command, may have failed to brief or supervise the co-pilot properly."
Observations of the Government of Argentina as State of Registry: "Argentina has determined, in the light of information it has gathered, that the cause of the accident was: "Failure to operate under IFR during a takeoff by night in weather conditions requiring IFR operation and failure to follow the climb procedure for this type of aircraft; a contributory cause was the lack of vigilance by the pilot-in-command during the operations."

An Argentinian Comet IV airliner exploded in mid air today soon after take-off at Campinas airport, Brazil, 240 miles west of here, diving into a eucalyptus grove and killing the 40 passengers and crew of 12. Thirty bodies had been recovered by this evening.

Eye-witnesses said that the Comet appeared to be trying to return to make an emergency landing. It was about 2,600 ft. above the ground and 450 yards from the runway when it exploded and fell "like a flaming torch".