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NEW ZEALAND DISASTERS
MT RUAPEHU AIR CRASH
23 OCTOBER 1948

On Saturday 23 October 1948, National Airways Corporation's plane Kaka left from Milson airport, Palmerston North bound for Hamilton. The Locheed Electra ZK-AGK was carrying 11 passengers and a crew of two.

Weather at the time was bad with strong winds, heavy cloud and rain. The alarm was raised when the Kaka failed to arrive at Hamilton and no radio contact could be made.

For the following week, the country was focused on just what had happened to the plane. Searchers were looking in the mountainous area between Wanganui and Hamilton, but the strong winds had meant the plane had gone badly off course.

Deerstalkers returning from a hunt on Mount Ruapehu were told of the missing plane and they reported hearing an areoplane near the mountain the day the plane had gone missing.

It was nearly a week after she had crashed before the wreckage of the Kaka was located. It was found that earlier detection of the plane would not have saved any of those on-board which was some small consolation for the rescuers.

Thanks to John Wilson for findng the names of the victims at National Archives.


ANDREWS Lindley Evelyn (F)
BELL William Johnston
COLLINGE Helen Forrest
COLLINGE Keith Donald
COLLINGE Trevor Austin Hooper
FOLLAS Frederick James
HEYWOOD Merton Stanley
KUNZ Margaret Eleanore
MUMFORD William Bevan Rosevere
PEASE Gertrude
PHYN Roderick Alister


HARE George Maxmillan (Max) Pilot
RUSSELL Brian Charles Co-pilot (2nd Officer)


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