Crash of Brigand OB--K VS857

Brigand OB--K of 45 Squadron crashed on June, 15, 1951 at about 11:30 AM when the starboard propellor broke free causing the engine to also be torn from the aircraft. This caused the aircraft to be uncontrollable. The Starboard undercarriage dropped down and that also made it more difficult to control, just like a Duck with one leg! You can see whats left of it and the wing in foreground is the one missing the engine and you can just make out the flat area, the bulkhead where it was attached. Gas was spewing out and the aircraft was gyrotating, Alan could get no control at all except for the first couple of seconds, his words will never leave me, the plane was changing attitude all the way down, at first the engine bulkhead was acting like a dive brake just on one side, after that the controls gave up and she was in a dive, we hit the ground first at a slight angle, a bit of luck, (This all was surmised at the inquiry) the nose came away Alan was slung out for about 50/70 ft.into the water, it bounced on and over and `then` hit the water, look closely at the wings, they are right side up both heading North, to your right, the fuselage is upside down and pointing South, to your left!!! the front, minus the nose was completely smashed and mangled as far back as my normal position, it would have been impossible for any one to have survived in the crew compartment. When I tried to get into there it was apparent that Vernon would not be coming out.

Peter Weston, the Radar Operator, and the pilot survived however the Navigator was killed in the crash. Here personnel from the squadron survey the wreck prior to salvage.

Peter A. Weston

paweston@trytel.com

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