Jersey City, NJ Plane Crash Kills Four, Apr 1930

AVIATOR WHO CRASHED LOST HIS WAY.

PILOT AND THREE PASSENGERS WERE BURNED TO DEATH.

PASSENGER PLANE WHICH LEFT MONTREAL FOR JERSEY CITY COULD NOT FIND LANDING FIELD.

STRUCK HIGH TENSION WIRE IN THE DESCENT.

ONE OF THE PASSENGERS WAS COUNT DE LA VAUIX, OF PARIS, NOTED FRENCH AVIATION ENTHUSIAST -- PLANE CAREENED BETWEEN BUILDINGS.

New York, April 19 -- (UP) -- An unexpected change in weather conditions was cited today as responsible for the deaths of COUNT HENRI DE LA VAULX, of Paris, president of the Federation Aeronautique Internationale, and three other persons when a Montreal-Newark monoplane crashed near Jersey City last night.
Earl F. Ward, chief of operations of the Canadian Colonial Airways, Inc., operators of the airline, conducted a preliminary investigation of the accident and issued a statement in which he intimated that there was no actual evidence of neglect.
The occupants were burned almost beyond recognition when the plane, groping through the fog for a landing place, struck a high tension wire and crashed to earth a moment later.
The dead:
COUNT HENRI DE LA VAULX, 60, of Paris.
MRS. MARY E. WILLIAMS, 27, of Providince, R.I.
ARTHUR V. CONKLIN, 33, of Huntington, L.I.
JOHN SOLLWAY, 37, of Albany, N.Y., the pilot.
Little was left of the Fairchild monoplane when officials extinguished the flames and removed the bodies. The crash severed a wire which supplied power for most of the downtown section of Jersey City and it was some time before lights could be restored.
The plane, a seven-passenger model, left the Canadian city at 12:15 p.m. yesterday with SOLLWAY, a pilot with 2,000 flying hours to his credit, substituting for the regular pilot, who was ill.
At that time COUNT DE LA VAULX, noted aviation enthusiast who was to have attended a dinner in New York last night, was the sole passenger. Fighting headwinds all the way the plane reached Albany at 3:10, twenty minutes behind its schedule.
There the two other passengers boarded the ship. SOLLWAY was advised by telephone from Newark that there was a 900-foot ceiling or level beneath which there was good visibility there, and he took off again.
Late afternoon shoppers in Jersey City heard the droning of the plane's engines just over their heads as the ship arrived. It careened between the buildings and at one time it appeared certain it would crash.
Then SOLLWAY found a "hole" in the fog over the meadows near the plant of the Public Service Gas and Electric company. Swooping down, the plane was headed directly for the dangerous high tension wires when a watchman waved a warning. It was too late. There was a crash, a tongue of flame and the plane fell to earth enveloped by fire.
It was fifteen minutes before rescuers could remove the bodies.

Dunkirk Evening Observer New York 1930-04-19