Dow Field, Maine – June 13, 1947
On June 13, 1947, 1st Lt. James B. Clouse was piloting a P-47 Thunderbolt, (#44-89427) from New York to Dow Field in Bangor when the aircraft’s canopy became covered with oil and dust obscuring his vision. To further complicate matters, the aircraft’s radio had ceased working.
He reached Dow Field just before 9:00 p.m., and circled in an attempt to establish radio contact, but was unsuccessful. Those in the control tower realized something was wrong, and turned on the lights of runway 22. The night was dark and there was no moon, further hindering the pilot’s vision.
As Lt. Clouse came in to land he realized he’d over shot the runway and went around for a second try. On his second approach the landing gear struck soft ground at the end of the runway and broke free. The aircraft’s momentum carried it down the runway on its belly causing major damage to the plane. Fortunately Lt. Clouse escaped without injury.
Source: Air Force Crash Investigation Report, #47-6-13-2