There were thousands of aircraft accidents in early US Air Force history. The development of new aircraft, training of new pilots, and all of the factors still causing accidents today, resulted in the loss of thousands of personnel and planes. the reports of these accidents were filed with the Air Force Office of Flying Safety under it's various names. Thousands of pages of documents eventually accumulated and were later converted to microfilm. The microfilmed mishap reports had been maintained by US Air Force for many years. Air Force Regulations denied any public access to those records until 1996, when they were changed to allow unlimited access to all reports up to December 31, 1955. It's because of this we're able to offer these complete investigation reports! The reports have survived only on 16mm microfilm reels which were extensively used for many years. Many of the documents are scratched, but still easily readable. However, there are some pages and portions of pages that are no longer legible.
DATA PAGE AND SUMMARY PAGE
These two pages contain the most details. The Data Page contains all the information such as airplane, pilot, base, damage, and mission. The Summary Page usually contains a description of the accident and the results of the investigation.
Most of the reports contain supporting documentation
that include: aircraft maintenance forms, pilot's statement, witnesses
statements, weather reports, airplane disposition, military orders for
personnel, and messages related to the accidents.
Some of the reports contain maps. They include maps of wreckage, crash locations, flight paths, airfields, and weather patterns. Due to the size, some are broken into several frames.