Compiled by Willie Bodenstein



The following events will to take place under the rules controlling the number of people congregating together and are therefore not open to the general public.

20 TO 22 MAY
SAPFA President's Trophy Air Race at Ermelo Airfield. Website: www.sapfa.co.za E-mail: Race@sapfa.org.za Contact Rob Jonkers E-mail: chairman@sapfa.co.za Cell: 082 804 7032

22 - 23 MAY
Grasslands camp and fly weekend. Booking entry fee R150.00 per person includes Saturday night braai pack and extras. RSVP before 14 May patricklab@wol.co.za.

22 MAY
A gathering of Chipmunks at Springs Airfield. We invite all to join the celebration at Springs Airfield. The ERFC will be hosting their annual Breakfast Fly-In on the day too. Breakfast will be available for all who fly in.

25 MAY
EAA South Africa Annual General Meeting via Zoom at 18h30. Contact Paul Lastrucci AGM co-ordinator rsvp@eaa.org.za

28 TO 30 MAY
RC Jets over Utopia. For more information contact Dave 082 455 1071 or Clint 082 894 2068

29 MAY
SAA Museum Society Airline Collectables Fair - Rand Airport. Contact E-mail: info@saamuseum.co.za Cell: 076 879 5044

30 MAY
Fly-Mu breakfast Fly-In and music festival at Springs airfield. Contact Fanie E-mail: ansan@tiscali.co.za Cell: 083 789 5507

EAA Chapter 322 monthly virtual meeting and MOTH hall. Contact Neil Bowden E-mail: neil1@telkomsa.net Cell: 084 674 5674

Newcastle airshow at Newcastle airfield. Contact Johan Pieters E-mail: Johan@champ.co.za Cell: 082 923 0078

Kroon Airfield Fly-In. Contact Marius 083 419 6613 or Kevin 061 008 9561. Food and refreshments will be available as well as a farmers' market, flips and more.

SAPFA Silver Queen Rally at AFB Zwartkops. Contact Rob Jonkers E-mail: rob@aerosud.co.za Cell: 082 804 7032

RV Fly-In day at Kitty Hawk airfield.Contact Frank van Heerden E-mail: frankvh@mweb.co.za

Sling breakfast Fly-in Tedderfield Airpark. Website: www.slingaircraft.com Contact Shanelle McKechnie Tel: +27 (0) 11 948 9898 Cell: +27 (0) 66 224 2128

30 JUNE - 3 JULY
Sport Aerobatics Club National Aerobatics Championships Phalaborwa Airfield. Contact Annie Boon E-mail: chunge@mweb.co.za or Natalie Stark natalie@stark.co.za

Written by defenceWeb

Serviceability and airworthiness of SAAF C-130BZ aircraft in doubt due to Denel problems. The sorry state of affairs at Denel is impacting on the ability of the SA Air Force (SAAF) to meet ordered commitments resulting in, to date, a request for "guidance" as regards air force financial authority approving payments to Denel Aeronautics as "aircraft systems are unavailable".

The request from Major General Setete Malakoane, Chief Director: Force Development and Support, is in the form of a letter to acting SAAF Chief, Lieutenant General Mzayifani Buthelezi, for the service's budget control committee (BCC).

Concern, in the letter, is expressed about the ability of the State-owned defence and technology conglomerate to meet its contractual commitments to the air force as far as product support and maintenance is concerned. The letter makes specific mention of the C-130BZ, Oryx and Rooivalk systems stating the support these platforms provide for operations "increased drastically".

The sad status of Denel, facing attachment of assets amid its ongoing inability to meet salary and other financial commitments to employees, is not confined only to airborne assets.

There are doubts about Denel PMP continuing to supply "some aircraft cartridges and small to medium calibre ammunition" with a knock-on effect on SAAF combat readiness.

Denel's inability to pay sub-contractors impacts "negatively" on support for SAMIL/SAMAG vehicles, leading to non-availability of operational vehicles.

Original equipment manufacturer (OEM) status for SAAF Oryx and Rooivalk helicopter systems is vested in Denel. The SAAF BCC points out: "Denel has outsourced services to sub-contractors to support systems. Denel's current financial situation has created a loss of capabilities. This has impacted operation of the SAAF and led to most of the aircraft systems being unavailable".

The "inadequate supply of spares is a huge drive factor for unserviceability" with an adverse effect on deep-level maintenance for "main propulsion components".

CAF is asked to put his mind to ground support equipment for SAAF assets as well. The letter has it these are unserviceable due to lack of maintenance and no spares from Denel.

The SAAF jet component - Gripen and Hawk - also face uncertain futures. This, according to the BCC letter, is due to Denel's inability to provide a service for calibration and maintenance of Gripen and Hawk test benches which will "impact negatively on aircraft serviceability".

Denel, the SAAF says, cannot provide "quality support" to the long-serving C130BZs of 28 Squadron.

The letter went to Buthelezi earlier this week in the wake of three April BCC meetings. Acting CAF and his permanent successor, Lieutenant General Wiseman Mbambo, are asked for guidelines on financial authority approvals related to Denel Aeronautics.



Sonaca Aircraft has made a new delivery of 3 Sonaca 200 Trainer Pro to AYJET, bringing the total number of aircraft delivered to date to 12.

The close collaboration between AYJET and Sonaca Aircraft began in April 2018 at the Aero Friedrichshafen show in Germany. By strengthening its fleet of "Sonaca 200" training aircraft, AYJET has expanded its training activities to Balikesir Koca Seyit Airport (ICA0: LTFD) after having started its Sonaca 200 training courses at the main base in Istanbul.


This new order complements the first acquisition of 24 Rafales signed on February 2015 and will bring the number of Rafales flying under Egyptian colours to 54, making the Egyptian Air Force the second in the world after the French Air Force, to operate such a fleet of Rafales.

It reflects the strategic relation between Egypt and France. It emphasizes also the confidence of the highest Egyptian authorities in Dassault Aviation and their satisfaction with the effective execution of the first contract.

"This new order is proof of the unfailing bond that unites Egypt, the first foreign user of the Rafale, as it was for the Mirage 2000, with Dassault Aviation for nearly 50 years. It is also a tribute to the Rafale's operational quality, as this is the second time an export customer has chosen to order additional aircraft. Dassault Aviation and its partners would like to thank the Egyptian authorities for this new mark of trust and assure them of their total commitment to meeting their expectations once again," stated Eric Trappier, Chairman and CEO of Dassault Aviation.

This contract confirms the Rafale's technological and operational excellence and its export success.


A P2012 Traveller in Airline configuration flew from Capua, Italy, to Siegerland, Germany, on April 14th as a demo aircraft dedicated to Air Alliance customers in the German and Austrian market. The P2012 is the first turbocharged twin piston aircraft in Air Alliance portfolio and it will join their offer of jets and turbo props of other established brands on the market.

With the TECNAM P2012 Air Alliance will benefit of its unique characteristics, enlarging and enriching its offer, to the potential customers in the region.

Comfortably accommodating nine passengers with one or two crew members, the Traveller is a new-generation, piston-powered, twin-engine, high-wing, fixed-landing-gear aircraft. The P2012 provides a cost-effective solution with varied configuration options, while always offering a travel experience that exceeds the category standard with features like air-conditioning, in-seat power, wide leg room, separated in-fuselage cargo hold and under-seat storage space.

Cutting-edge avionics by Garmin offers pilots all the information they require for day and night operations in VFR, IFR and PBN; the "SPACE" cockpit, based on the proven G1000 NXi, has been specifically designed to reduce pilot workload, for a safer and smarter mission accomplishment. For all these features, the aircraft can be operated by a single pilot and in all-weather conditions including Flight In Known Icing (FIKI).

The P2012 series offers also Combi, Air Ambulance and parachute jumping aircraft variants, plus dedicated Special Mission and Full Cargo versions.


After leading the turbine-powered business aircraft market in 2020, Pilatus passes another fleet milestone with the delivery of the 1800TH example of the versatile single-engine turboprop. At 82 deliveries, according to the General Aviation Manufacturers Association's 2020 Year-End Aircraft Shipment Report, the Pilatus PC-12 was the most popular model of all turbine-powered business aircraft.

Building on that success, Pilatus delivered the 1800th production unit at the end of April. PC-12 NGX serial number 2070 was delivered to Alán Aguirre, owner of Divine Flavor LLC, a family-run and grower-owned distribution company based in Nogales, Arizona, with greenhouses and vineyards throughout Mexico.

Following the first flight in his new PC-12 NGX, Mr Aguirre commented: "We're very satisfied with our purchase of the 1800th PC-12, and after flying it, I'm certain we made the right choice. The return on cost is certainly the best in its category, as the NGX includes the latest engine and avionics technology and the interior and exterior is a thing of beauty. Pilatus should be proud of the distinctive precision of its Swiss origin."

Adrian Zambrano, Managing Director of the Authorised Pilatus Sales & Service Centre in Mexico, handed over the keys to the new PC-12 NGX to Mr Aguirre at the Pilatus Broomfield completions and delivery centre in Colorado and stated: "We're privileged to work with Pilatus and also with driven and successful customers who place their trust in our aircraft. We're looking forward to the next 1800 PC-12s!"


Helicopters of the Mi and Ka brands, produced by the enterprises under the Russian Helicopters holding company, have since the beginning of 2021 taken part in firefighting operations in more than 10 countries of Asia, Europe and Latin America. In particular, Russian-made helicopters were used in India, South Korea, Thailand, Croatia, Argentina, Spain, China, Georgia, Indonesia, Mexico and Chile.

South Korea is the largest operator of Russian Ka-32 which is the main helicopter for fighting forest fires in the country. More than 50 helicopters of this type are operated by Korea Forest Service, Air Force, Coast Guard and private companies. According to the Korea Forest Service, 13 of its 29 Ka-32 helicopters were used in firefighting in North Gyeongsang Province this January. Helicopters were deployed after a series of forest fires occurred in the area of Ochon-ri, Changsu-myeon.

Since early February, Ka-32 helicopter has spearheaded aerial firefighting operations in Kor, Li, Hod and Lamphun in Thailand. Heavy fog, cold mornings and hot afternoons accumulate a large amount of dust and smog, which covered number of cities in the province of Chiang Mai. While operating in the area, Ka-32 helicopters have extinguished over 19 fires, using a total of 57,000 litres of water. In addition to water bombing from an external sling to extinguish fires, Ka and Mi helicopters are operated in Indonesia to carry out air patrols and water transport. In turn, Mi-17V-5 helicopter was deployed to extinguish fires at the Shirui heights in Northeast India.

China is already actively fighting seasonal fires with a fleet consisting of Ka-32s, and also the heavy lifting Mi-26. A Mi-26 quickly extinguished a forest fire on the outskirts of the city of Xichang in the Sichuan province, which could have engulfed nearby villages.

The Mexican Secretariat of the Navy has announced the completion of an exercise aimed at protecting the environment and natural resources. During the exercise, the naval forces practiced extinguishing fires using Mi-17 helicopters, which earlier this year already took part in similar operations in Sierra de Arteaga and continue to operate in the municipality of Santiago, Nuevo Leon. At the same time, Ka-32 helicopters did three days of firefighting operations in the Lago Penuelas in Chile and put out a fire in Ranedo de Curueño, Castile and León in Spain.


Bell Textron Inc., a Textron Inc. (NYSE: TXT) company, has announced that the Bell 505 cargo hook has been approved by European Union Aviation Safety Agency (EASA) to carry up to 2,000 pounds (907 kg) giving the aircraft an external gross weight capability of 4,475 pounds (2,030 kg).

"The cargo hook capabilities are an important enhancement for the aircraft and an added capability for utility and public safety operations," said Duncan Van De Velde, managing director, Europe & Russia. "The Bell 505 is built for versatility and being able to adapt quickly and the cargo hook will be a great addition for our utility customers in Europe."

In November 2018, Storm Heliworks AB, a helicopter operator based in Sweden tested out the 505-cargo hook while in Canada. The company performed a wide range of specialized operations, such as building power lines, clearing trees from power lines, forest inspections, mosquito control, firefighting and other missions.

"Our experience with flying the 505 was very positive and proved to be excellent aircraft for our missions," said Dennis Sundqvist, deputy flight operating manager, Storm Heliworks. "Cargo hooks are pertinent for our work. The Bell 505 is the strongest helicopter we've flown for its size and excited to see this added capability to the aircraft certified."

One of Bell's North American 505 operators, Rocky Mountain Rotors, utilizes its 505-cargo hook for search and rescue (SAR) and utility missions. It is a premier provider of helicopter services in Montana, Wyoming and Idaho and detailed his experience with the aircraft.

"The Bell 505 is very diversified as far as the missions it can do," said Mark Taylor, founder/co-owner/chief pilot, Rocky Mountain Rotors. "There's been multiple times we've had to turn it into a cargo ship versus a passenger ship and most of those times its involved search and rescue. The performance of the helicopter is impressive."

"There's a big pricing difference between a 505 and a long light single's cost of operations," continued Taylor. "If I need to move more weight, I'm looking at my larger single engine aircraft, but the 505 is right there as a contender and I can operate it for quite a bit less than the other aircraft. Being competitive with an aircraft that's capable of performing in rugged terrain in Montana, it definitely has helped."

With a speed of 125 knots (232 km/h) and useful load of 1,500 pounds (680 kg), the Bell 505 is designed to be safe and easy to fly while providing significant value to the operator. The customer-driven design of the aircraft places safety, performance and affordability at the forefront, blending proven systems with advanced technology and a sleek, modern design.


The U.S. government and Lockheed Martin (NYSE: LMT) submitted an F-35 best and final offer (BAFO) on April 29, 2021, to the Finnish government in support of its competition to replace its current fighter fleet. The 5th Generation F-35 provides unmatched capabilities, security of supply and industrial opportunities for Finland.

The F-35 offering is a total package that includes F-35A aircraft and a sustainment solution tailored to meet Finnish security of supply requirements to support all operational needs if in a closed border scenario. The BAFO also includes many first-of-a-kind opportunities for Finnish industry to work directly on F-35 production and sustainment.

"The F-35 will provide Finnish industries high technology job opportunities that no other competitor can offer," said Bridget Lauderdale, F-35 Program vice president and general manager. "The production work will continue for more than 20 years and the F-35 sustainment work will continue into the 2050s. Not only will Finland support its own F-35s, but it will directly support the global fleet of F-35s through the production of major components."

Through indirect industrial participation projects outside of F-35 production, Lockheed Martin will also build partnerships with Finnish companies and academic institutions that offer opportunities focused on developing and advancing security collaborations.

With stealth technology, supersonic speed, advanced sensors, weapons capacity and increased range, the F-35 is the most advanced, survivable and connected aircraft in the world. It is also the most affordable solution for the Finnish Air Force's future fighter fleet as the only 5th Generation fighter at the cost of 4th Generation aircraft.

To date, the F-35 has been selected by 13 nations and operates from 27 bases worldwide, with nine nations operating F-35s on their home soil. More than 630 F-35s are in service today, with more than 1,300 pilots and 10,380 maintainers trained on the aircraft.


Wingcopter, the German developer, manufacturer and service-provider of Unmanned Aircraft Systems for commercial and humanitarian applications, has introduced its new drone generation, the Wingcopter 198. The Wingcopter 198 is an all-electric, vertical-take-off-and-landing (eVTOL), fixed-wing drone that has been designed from the ground up to meet aviation safety and reliability requirements.

The new delivery system leverages Wingcopter's broad experience in aviation innovation and establishes a new industry standard in drone technology and drone-based logistics.

"The Wingcopter 198 is a game-changer for drone-based deliveries, ready to create logistical highways in the sky. It can be perfectly utilized as a fleet solution in delivery networks to create new opportunities, everywhere", said Tom Plu¨mmer, CEO of Wingcopter.

The Wingcopter 198 builds on the following core product features:

High Performance: Based on Wingcopter's patented tilt-rotor technology, the Wingcopter 198 takes off and lands vertically anywhere without the need for additional infrastructure and smoothly transitions into quiet and enduring forward flight. It can carry payloads of 6 kilograms (13 pounds) on one battery charge over 75 kilometers (47 miles), or up to 110 kilometers (68 miles) with less payload, even in challenging weather conditions. This makes the Wingcopter 198 the optimal solution for any delivery fleet addressing the middle or last-mile gap, especially in rural areas or hard-to-reach places such as islands, mountainous areas or offshore platforms and ships. The aircraft's top speed of 150 km/h (93 mph) enables on-demand express deliveries.

Efficiency: The unique triple-drop mechanism allows for separate and precise winch-delivery of up to three packages to multiple destinations per flight. Alternatively, the Wingcopter 198 can deliver two medium-sized packages or one large package providing maximum flexibility in size and shape. The entire delivery process is fully automatic. In addition, one operator can control a fleet of up to 10 Wingcopter 198s simultaneously anywhere in the world via new control station software. Moreover, the Wingcopter 198 is equipped with advanced maintenance technology to avoid unplanned downtimes, improve parts reliability and lower maintenance costs.

Safety: The Wingcopter 198 is a delivery drone designed and developed according to aviation safety standards and currently undergoing FAA type certification in the USA. Thanks to the redundant system architecture which includes eight instead of four motors, the Wingcopter 198 provides an extremely high degree of reliability and safety. All other essential components such as the flight controller, airspeed sensor or battery are also redundantly integrated. The main communication link to the operator is LTE/5G, backed up by satellite. Specially developed detect-and-avoid software combining ADS-B, Flarm, Remote ID and visual artificial intelligence interprets the flight environment in real-time and automatically initiates evasive manoeuvres, when required. Downward-looking cameras use AI-based optical sensing for accurate and safe parcel dropping as well as precision landing in combination with obstacle avoidance.

Ease of use: The Wingcopter 198 software and interface design were developed with a clear focus on making the user's workflow as simple and efficient as possible. It allows for fully autonomous, beyond-visual-line-of-sight (BVLOS) flights and automated deliveries. The smart batteries can be swapped within seconds to maximize time in the air. The Wingcopter Cloud allows for mission planning to be independent of the operation by using different control stations. APIs enable a seamless integration of fleet information into customer software solutions.

This unique combination of software, hardware and operability makes the Wingcopter 198 the ideal platform for drone-based delivery of a broad selection of goods, from medical supplies to consumer goods, spare parts and tools, as well as groceries or freshly prepared food.

Serial production according to the European aerospace quality management standard EN9100 at Wingcopter's German headquarters will start shortly to meet the predicted global demand. For early access, the first 100 units of the Wingcopter 198 can be reserved here as of today.


Saab has, with strong support from the Swedish Government, submitted its Best and Final Offer (BAFO) to the Finnish defence procurement agency for the Finnish HX fighter procurement. The proposal comprises 64 Gripen E fighter aircraft and an extensive weapons package, as well as two GlobalEye Airborne Early Warning & Control (AEW&C) aircraft. This constitutes the response to the customer's January 2021 request for a BAFO. Finland is replacing the capability provided by its current fleet of F/A-18 C/D Hornet aircraft.

The proposed solution features the latest cutting-edge technology for the continuously changing and very challenging operational environment. Gripen is built to defeat the threats of our region and responds very well to the customer's requirements. It is furthermore designed for road-base operations in a harsh climate and to enable easy maintenance by conscript mechanics. The offering includes some of the most advanced weapons, such as the Meteor for air targets at medium to long distance, the IRIS-T for air targets at short distance, SPEAR for ground targets at medium distance and the KEPD350/Taurus for long-range strike missions against ground targets.

GlobalEye brings unique additional sensor capabilities - for joint operations with Gripen as well as providing benefits for the entire Finnish defence forces. As a strategic asset, GlobalEye will serve across the entire operational spectrum, providing vital information for Finland. The combined effect of Gripen and GlobalEye will be very powerful.

"With Gripen's outstanding capabilities and availability, Finland can renew its fighter fleet without compromising on the number of fighters. Thanks to a truly competitive life-cycle cost, the Finnish Defence Forces will be able to stay within the budgetary targets and even secure a margin for other vital defence capabilities over the years to come," says Micael Johansson, President and CEO of Saab.

"With GlobalEye, we bring significant additional sensor capabilities that will provide strategic and real-time information to Gripen and the entire joint defence forces. We are happy to include GlobalEye as the world´s most advanced AEW&C platform," Johansson continues.

The proposal also comprises the necessary equipment and associated services needed for operating the system through an extensive industrial co-operation programme, with the aim to build national capabilities in Finland for Security of Supply. This includes transfer to local industry of maintenance, repair and overhaul capabilities, parts production, as well as final assembly of engines and aircraft. Saab will also establish a Gripen & GlobalEye System Centre in Finland, to ensure independent operations and continuous capability growth of the systems until 2060.

According to the customer's planning, a procurement decision is foreseen late 2021.

Finland is an important market for Saab. The company has a long history in the country and is constantly expanding its activities and establishing partnerships with local industry and academia. More recently Saab has initiated extensive research co-operation with the Aalto University, established a Technology Centre in Tampere, currently employing over 50 engineers and has extensive co-operation with the research institute VTT and several Finnish defence companies.


In its newly released investigation report the Transportation Safety Board of Canada (TSB) found that the 20th January 2020 hard landing and tailstrike of a DHC-8-300 in Schefferville, Canada, was the result of an unstable approach.

On the day, a DHC-8-314 operated by Air Inuit was conducting a flight from Québec-Jean Lesage Airport, to Schefferville Airport, with three crew members and 42 passengers on board. During the landing, the rear fuselage struck the runway as the wheels touched down. After landing, the aircraft taxied to the terminal to disembark the passengers. There were no injuries but the aircraft sustained substantial damage.

The investigation found that the flight crew forgot to perform the descent checklist and realized this at an inopportune time, while the captain (pilot monitoring) was providing a position report. Given ambiguities and contradictions in the company's stabilized approach guidelines, the captain interpreted that he was allowed to continue the approach below 500 feet above aerodrome elevation, even though the aircraft had not been fully configured for the landing. When the aircraft passed this altitude, the pilots, who were dealing with a heavy workload, didn't notice and continued the approach, which was unstable. At the time of the landing, the aircraft no longer had enough energy to arrest the descent rate solely by increasing pitch attitude. The pilot's instinctive reaction to increase the pitch attitude during the flare, combined with the hard landing, resulted in the rear fuselage striking the runway, causing substantial damage to the aircraft's structure.

The investigation also made findings as to risk related to Air Inuit's standard operating procedures (SOPs) and training, and to Transport Canada's (TC) oversight. Transport Canada assessed Air Inuit's SOPs, but did not identify any specific issues with the operator's stabilized approach guidelines. If TC does not assess the quality, consistency, accuracy conciseness, clarity, relevance, and content of SOPs, the procedures may be ineffective, increasing risks to flight operations.

Additionally, the captain had not received many of the required training elements during his recurrent training. If required training elements are not included in recurrent training, and if TC's surveillance plan does not verify the content of crew training, there may be procedural deficiencies or deviations, increasing risks to flight operations.

South Africa, Rhino Park Airfield: A Lancair over ran the runway at Rhino Park Airfield and ended up in grass that was set on fire by the overheated brakes. The aircraft was totally destroyed in the subsequent fire. The pilot escaped and suffered no injuries.

UK, Headcorn Aerodrome, Kent: A Stampe SV-4C biplane of the Stampe Formation Flying Team crashed during formation practice at Headcorn Aerodrome, Kent, U.K., killing the pilot. It is alleged that the pilot was doing a stall turn when the aircraft went down.

Poland, Zielona Góra-Przylep Airport: A Tecnam Astore crashed under unknown circumstances. The aircraft was destroyed when it impacted terrain during a landing attempt at Zielona Góra-Przylep Airport (EPZP), Poland. The sole pilot onboard was fatally injured.

Germany, Ballenstedt Airport: A Cessna F172P with two on board struck a car while attempting to land at Ballenstedt Airport, Germany. Preliminary information suggests that the Cessna's nose landing gear struck the rear roof of a VW Caddy car on the K1362 road. The Cessna then touched down on the paved part of runway 27, before the threshold, and came to rest on the right-hand edge of the runway. The paved part of the runway starts 30 m from the edge of the road, while the runway 27 threshold is about 220m past the road.

Poland, Torun, Poland: An Aviation Artur Trendak Tercel Gyrocopter flying on autorotation attempted an emergency landing on unused rails, but hooked a medium-voltage power line and crashed in the forest. A small fire occurred, but was quickly extinguished. The pilot did not suffer any injuries.

USA, SE of Stellar Airpark, Chandler, AZ: A Cessna 172R Skyhawk operated by American Flyers with one on board sustained substantial damage during an apparent forced landing to major roadway terrain southeast of the approach end of Runway 35 at Stellar Airpark (P19), Chandler, Arizona. The sole pilot onboard the airplane received unspecified but apparent minor injuries.

Switzerland, Oberramsern: A Lancair Legacy 2000 operated by Cross Country Flyers with two occupants was destroyed when it impacted an open field under unknown circumstances near Oberramsern, Solothurn, Switzerland. The two occupants onboard were fatally injured.

Spain, near Sabadell Airport: A Diamond DA20-A1 Katana operated by Centro de Estudios Superiores de la Aviación with only the pilot on board experienced oil pressure problems and crashed on railroad tracks while attempting to divert to Sabadell Airport (QSA/LELL), Spain. The sole pilot onboard received minor injuries.

Germany, Lachen-Speyerdorf Airfield: A Piper PA-18-150 Super Cub with only the pilot on board impacted a two meter high fence during a go around following an attempted landing in crosswind conditions at Lachen-Speyerdorf Airfield (EDRL). The Super Cub came to a standstill about a hundred meters from the runway. The pilot was able to exit the aircraft uninjured.

4 MAY 1942

The Kufra tragedy occurred in May 1942 during World War II when eleven of twelve South African aircrew flying in three South African Air Force No. 15 Squadron Bristol Blenheim Mark IV aircraft died of thirst and exposure after the flight became lost following a navigational error near the oasis of Kufra in Libya and made a forced landing in the Libyan Desert.

An inquiry into the incident took place at Kufra from 1 to 4 June 1942. The board of inquiry attributed the incident to the crews' lack of experience in desert flying; their failure to keep accurate navigator's logs and the failure of wireless operators to perform their duties during the flight. The board placed the responsibility for the forced landing on the crew of the leading aircraft, Z7513 flown by Major de Wet. The board attributed the failure of the ground and air searches to a lack of accurate information regarding the possible position of the aircraft; the difficult terrain; the sandstorm; problems with unserviceable aircraft that could not carry out search functions assigned to them and poor signal organisation. It also found that the downed Blenheim crews did little to assist the searchers in finding them because the crews engaged in bad direction-finding procedures even after landing and failed to employ visual signals and smudge fires.

The inquiry also identified reasons for the early death of the stranded aviators, finding that they failed to appreciate their plight or to ration water immediately and that they made foolish use of compass alcohol, A/Mech van Breda having drunk it despite its poisonous qualities, and fire extinguishers, which they had sprayed on themselves for temporary relief from the heat resulting in the infliction of painful skin injuries. and their ignorance of survival techniques

and subscribe to our YouTube channel

Midweek Update

Copyright © 2024 Pilot's Post PTY Ltd
The information, views and opinions by the authors contributing to Pilot’s Post are not necessarily those of the editor or other writers at Pilot’s Post.