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Liberator II AL531 [Royal Air Force Aircraft Serial and Image Database] RAFCommands.com

 Liberator II AL531



c/n 29; TOC Dorval 19.11.41; used by FCCS 11.41; Dorval-Gander 3.12.41, Gander-Prestwick 4.12.41; SAL, Prestwick 4.12.41; SAL - 22 MU Silloth 10.12.41; 22 MU - SAL, Prestwick, for mods for 1445 Flt, 22.4.42; to 1445 Flt 2.6.42 for ME; to Hurn 21.6.42; 159 Sqn [K]; to India 10.42; landing gear jammed and aircraft crash-landed at Karachi 4.11.42. SOC 2.6.43. More information in: The Liberator in RAF and Commonwealth Service by James D. Oughton , John F. Hamlin, Andrew Thomas

Aircraft Accident / Loss Entry

Date of Crash  04 Nov 42 Aircraft Name  Liberator II Serial Number  AL531
Unit  159 Sqdn Operating Airfield  Karachi Country  India
Aircrew details Sqn Ldr John Leighton Beck
Plt Offr Jack Evans
Details CrL in Karachi Undercarriage jammed; crashlanded at Karachi, 4.11.42; not repaired and SOC 2.6.43. Matt Poole: On 2 Nov 1942 S/Ldr John Leighton Beck DFC & bar and his 2nd pilot, P/O Jack Evans departed the ME (Aqir, Palestine?) for a posting to 159 Sqn's new base at Salbani, India. The 160 Sqn ORB erroneously lists their Lib as AL630, but the 160 ORB also shows that AL630 continued flying on ops with 160 after Beck's departure. It is certain that Beck's aircraft was AL531 when he departed the ME on 2 Nov and when it crashed at Karachi on 4 Nov. Beck's logbook is missing, but his memoir, with no serial number given, describes the 4 Nov 1942 prang well. He and Evans were the only crew aboard for the crash; all others, including groundcrew passengers, successfully bailed out. The starboard undercarriage had stuck halfway down after the ram which forces the wheels down had snapped. In the landing attempt the starboard wing dropped and the outer engine dug into the ground, ground looping the aircraft. There was no fire, but AL531 was a write-off the frame being badly twisted. Aircraft not repaired.
Source Matt Poole


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