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Thread: Short Singapore K6916 RNZAF

  1. #1
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    Default Short Singapore K6916 RNZAF

    Hello,

    Short Singapore K6916 is know to have struck submerged coral outcrop on take-off on 18 December 1941 while in serving with 5 Sqn RNZAF. Do we know the name of the captain of the crew?

    Thanks

    Phil

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    Default Re: Short Singapore K6916 RNZAF

    Phil,

    The pilot of Singapore K6916 appears to be:

    NZ1022 Sqn Ldr Eric Maple LEWIS RNZAF (OC. No.5 Sqn RNZAF, later Gp Capt, OBE).

    http://www.airwar.ru/enc/sww2/singap.html

    LEWIS, Group Captain Eric Maple, OBE. NZ1022; Born Devonport, England, 17 Mar 1912; RAF 1 Apr 1932 to 29 Aug 1936; RNZAF 23 Apr 1938 to 11 May 1947; Pilot.

    See:
    By Such Deeds Honours and Awards in the Royal New Zealand Air Force 1923 - 1999.
    Hanson,C. M. Group Captain OBE, RNZAF (Rtd).
    Christchurch:Volplane Press,2001.
    p.306.

    Col
    Last edited by COL BRUGGY; 17th December 2021 at 23:05.

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    Phil Listemann (18th December 2021)

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    Default Re: Short Singapore K6916 RNZAF

    This Singapore III accident was caused by "creep" of the elevator trim controls, due to vibration from the four Kestrel engines at full song for an extended period (and probably a certain amount of wear on the friction device fitted to hopefully stop the aforementioned creep!) However one version of this accident has it that it overrun the alighting/take off area and ran onto a mudbank on the outer reaches of the Suva operating area. The RNZAF engineering types at Suva assessed this damage after beaching the aircraft and seemed to think they could repair the (quite severe) hull damage given certain facilities and raw materials, but despite this first flush of optimism, nothing much of consequence was ever attempted, probably a result of the fact that they still had three airworthy aircraft, and the Americans (who were the masters of operations and requirements in the South Pacific), seemed to be not impressed by the limited capabilities of this type of aircraft. I think write off action was carried out with respect to this particular aircraft in about July 1942. Another Singapore was struck off the books in December 1942, and the remaining pair in about April 1943, mainly due to obsolescence, and the timely arrival of new PBY Catalinas from the US of A at this time.

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