Date & Time: Oct 21, 1941 at 1200 LT
Type of aircraft:
Saro A.36 Lerwick
Operator:
Registration:
L7248
Flight Phase:
Takeoff (climb)
Flight Type:
Calibration
Survivors:
No
Schedule:
Helensburgh - Helensburgh
Region:
Europe
Crew on board:
6
Crew fatalities:
6
Pax on board:
1
Pax fatalities:
1
Other fatalities:
0
Total fatalities:
7
Circumstances:
Shortly after take off from Helensburgh, while climbing, the right engine failed. The crew was unable to maintain a safe height on just one engine and the aircraft hit a hillside near Faslane, north of Helensburgh. All seven occupants, engaged in a calibration test flight, were killed.
Crew:
F/Lt John Collison Alexander, pilot,
P/O Charles Henry Mills, pilot and observer,
LAC William Sidney Emilio Gianella, air gunner,
LAC William Desmond John McLaughlin, radio operator,
AC2 Peter Beattie Hunter,
AC1 Raymond Theodor Moorcroft Bullocke,
Passenger:
Mr Wilfred Harry Such, civilian instrument repairer.
Source:
http://www.helensburgh-heritage.co.uk/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=582:seven-died-in-faslane-seaplane-crash&catid=88:military&Itemid=462
Probable cause:
Eyewitnesses saw the starboard wing dip before the crash. The two engines, which were recovered from the wreckage and sent to Bristol for examination, were found to be fully serviceable. So it was assumed that flying control problems had been experienced. The Court of Inquiry into the accident concluded that Lerwicks were unstable, particularly on landing approach. It was further noted by the Air Investigating Board, together with the MAEE commanding officer, that the handling characteristics of the Lerwick had never been satisfactory when flying with one engine feathered.