Results 1 to 5 of 5

Thread: Possible abandonment 12th Oct 1943

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Stockport, UK
    Posts
    1,197
    Thanks
    0
    Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts

    Default Possible abandonment 12th Oct 1943

    I've been going through the 41 OTU ORB and noticed an entry from the 12th October 1943 which doesn't make that much sense. A Liberator landed at Hawarden at 21.00 with a pilot & navigator on board, no other crew are referred to. It states that the two officers stayed the night before leaving. The aircraft is reported to have been on patrol over the Bay of Biscay and the navigator made a mistake in dead reckoning.

    Has anyone come across the rest of a Liberator crew leaving their aircraft on the 12th Oct 1943 while returning from a patrol?
    Alan Clark

    Peak District Air Accident Research

    http://www.peakdistrictaircrashes.co.uk/

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Prague, Czech Republic
    Posts
    3,412
    Thanks
    17
    Thanked 13 Times in 12 Posts

    Default

    Hi Alan,
    it seems to me quite unreal to manage such aircraft like Liberator in two persons only...
    I saw ORBs during my research where for example only Captain was mentioned or only Cpt, 2nd and Nav etc. Other ORBs refer only postings of officers. Could be this such a situation?

    Pavel
    Czechoslovak Airmen in the RAF 1940-1945
    http://cz-raf.webnode.cz

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Stockport, UK
    Posts
    1,197
    Thanks
    0
    Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts

    Default

    I don't think so, this is what it says:

    "A Liberator aircraft put down at this Station at 21.00 hours with Pilot & Navigator. This aircraft had been on patrol in the Bay of Biscay & apparently the Navigator had made a mistake in his reckoning – both officers stayed the night"

    I have also seen many entries where only the Captain has been referred to, but the way this entry is written reads differently to those. It could be the case that the person who wrote up the ORB entry just made it sound like two men in a Liberator turned up when there was a full crew. I have come across a couple of examples of heavy aircraft being flown by only two crew after the others have left, most recently a Lancaster which made it made to Manston with just the pilot and navigator onboard, the others having baled out over Belgium (into liberated territory).
    Alan Clark

    Peak District Air Accident Research

    http://www.peakdistrictaircrashes.co.uk/

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Prague, Czech Republic
    Posts
    3,412
    Thanks
    17
    Thanked 13 Times in 12 Posts

    Default

    Alan now it sounds really different, I agree.
    As far as I know there were Liberators used by both RAF and US over Bay of Biscay...
    From the record it seems to me it was a RAF Liberator - B-24s was used by RAF Coastal Command Nos. 53, 59, 86, 120, 160, 206, 220, 224, 311 and 547 Sqn - sorry I have not the periods when.
    Only for 311 Sq I can say that there were two crews on operations over Bay of Biscay and both returned home safely, first at 17.58, second at 18.36.

    Pavel
    Czechoslovak Airmen in the RAF 1940-1945
    http://cz-raf.webnode.cz

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Location
    Christchurch, New Zealand
    Posts
    1,007
    Thanks
    0
    Thanked 3 Times in 3 Posts

    Default

    I really cannot believe that an authorising officer (FLight Commander, or CO) would actually authorise a Liberator to fly an operational patrol or search over the Bay of Biscay in October 1943 with no gunners and nobody available to operate the ASV (assuming that the navigator was fully engaged on navigation of course!) Why would such an aircraft be considered even operational in such a state? I think this has to be a cryptic statement, probably recorded by an officer, when he sees fit to make no mention of "other ranks" on board. I think Liberators also frequently carried second pilots right through the war, as in Sunderlands, mainly because of the length of operational flights, which required rest spells from piloting. However I cannot state that this was always the case.

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •