Nebraska Trips June 19, 2018
by Delana Lefevers The Terrifying, Deadly Plane Crash In Nebraska That Will Never Be Forgotten
Much of Nebraska’s history is filled with positive stories, but we’ve also got some tragic tales to tell. One such story began on the evening of August 6, 1966.
Braniff Airlines Flight 250 took off from Kansas City at 10:55 p.m. and headed for Omaha.
The aircraft was a BAC-1-11-203AE; the plane pictured above is the actual plane that set out on that fateful flight. This picture was taken just a few weeks before, as the aircraft rested in Dallas.
Just a few minutes into the flight, the crew encountered a line of thunderstorms.
Ground crews and other flight crews were not reporting any significant trouble due to the storms, though, so Captain Donald Pauly and First Officer James Hilliker continued on their course. Some witnesses would later say that the plane flew directly into a large storm cloud while others would say the plane ascended to avoid the cloud. Either way, tragedy ensued.
The plane began to break up mid-flight, and within seconds would plummet to the ground in a field just outside of Falls City.
All 42 people on board - 38 passengers and four crew members - perished in the crash. Later investigations had difficulty pinning down a precise cause of the crash since conditions didn't seem severe enough to cause such an incident.
After studying the wreckage and cockpit voice recorder, investigators concluded that the plane suffered structural failure due to the application of unneeded evasive action. Weather was a factor, but not a significant one.
The memorial above was erected at the crash site in 2006 on the 40th anniversary of the crash. Below is footage from the 50th anniversary of the crash, held in Falls City in 2016.
The Braniff flight 250 crash has remained the deadliest commercial air crash in Nebraska’s history. Nebraskans have never forgotten this terrible tragedy.
Not all deadly tragedies in Nebraska’s history have been accidents; one of the worst railroad crashes in the state was the result of intentional sabotage.
Read the shocking story here.
OnlyInYourState may earn compensation through affiliate links in this article.