Propeller of 1946 US plane crash in Swiss glacier

August 9, 2012 - 9:38 AM
Switzerland US Plane Crash Discovery

Mountain rescuers recover the propeller of US warplane C-53 Skytrooper “Dakota” that crashed in 1946, on the Gauli glacier in the Bernese Alps, Switzerland, Thursday Aug. 9, 2012. Three young climbers discovered a propeller piece of the legendary airplane at the end of July 2012. The Dakota crash on the Gauli Glacier on Nov. 19, 1946 was a turning point in alpine rescue and an international media event. The aircraft, coming from Austria bound for Italy, collided with the Gauli glacier in poor visibility. On board were four crew members and eight passengers. Among the eight passengers were high-ranking officers of the U.S. armed forces with some of their relatives. Several people were injured, but there were no fatalities. The propeller will be transported to the near Gauli cabin. (AP Photo/Keystone, Gaetan Bally)

GENEVA (AP) — Mountain rescuers have recovered the propeller of a U.S. Air Force plane that crashed in November 1946 on a glacier in the Bernese Alps.

The crash of the Douglas C-53 Skytrooper on the Gauli Glacier marked the first time a rescue mission used an aircraft to land on a glacier and led to the creation of Switzerland's air rescue services.

The propeller was removed Thursday from the glacier and taken to nearby Gauli hut at 2,205 meters (7,234 feet).

Swiss newspaper Der Bund reported three young climbers found a piece of the propeller about three kilometers from the crash site in late July.

The plane went down in poor visibility on its way from Austria to Italy with four crew members and eight passengers, causing some injuries but no fatalities.