- ACCIDENT DETAILS
Date: October 13, 1972
Time: 15:30
Location: Near San Fernando, Chile
Operator: Uruguayan Air Force - TAMU
Flight #: ?
Route: Mendoza - Santiago
AC Type: Fairchild-Hiller FH-227D/LCD
Registration: T-571
cn / ln: 572
Aboard: 45   (passengers:40  crew:5)
Fatalities: 29   (passengers:24  crew:5)
Ground: 0
Summary: The plane left Montevideo bound for Santiago, Chile carrying the Old Christians Rugby Team. After leaving Mendoza and while flying at FL150, the copilot radioed he was over Curico and requested clearance to FL100. Because of head winds, the plane was actually still over the Andes. As the plane descended into clouds it ran into turbulence and the crew found themselves surrounded by mountains on all sides. The crew tried to climb out but the right wingtip struck the mountainside. The right wing detached and separated from the aircraft taking off part of the tail. The fuselage slid down a mountain slope and came to rest in the Andes mountains at an altitude of 12,000 feet. The survivors were not found until 12/22/72. Eight passengers died in an avalanche on October 30. Survivors resorted to cannibalism to stay alive. The book and movie "Alive" is based on this accident. The aircraft flew into a rotor zone or mountain wave which led to loss of control of the aircraft.
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