VH-ADS R.M.A. Carmania


Type: L-14-H2 Super Electra
MSN: 1431
Previous Identities: NC17392
Subsequent Identities: Nil

History:

28APR38 Construction completed at Burbank.
05MAY38 Delivered to Northwest Airlines as NC17392. (Fleet Number 92).
JUN39 Sold to Continental Airlines, Denver, Colorado for $80,000.
41 Sold to W.R. Carpenter & Co., for their Sydney-Rabaul route.
29APR41 Arrived dismantled at W.R. Carpenter's hangar at Mascot (along with VH-ADT).
19MAY41 Registration application from W.R. Carpenter & Co., Sydney.
30MAY41 Entered service Sydney-Rabaul. Crewed by Captain Dick Mant plus a co-pilot and a flight hostess. There were twelve passengers.
03JUN41 Added to the Australian Register as VH-ADS. Named "R.M.A. Carmania".
JUL41 Damaged in a wheels up landing at Townsville due to hydraulic failure. Temporarily repaired by the RAAF at Townsville and ferried to Essendon via Mascot for repairs by A.N.A.
14AUG41 Made the first one day trip from Port Moresby to Sydney in 10 hours 40 minutes. (Capt R.O. Mant).
DEC41 Participated in the evacuation of civilians from New Guinea to Cairns.
04JAN42 Participated in the evacuation of civilians from Rabaul after enemy air raids.
JAN42 Participated in the evacuation of civilians from Wau to Port Moresby and on to Australia.
27JAN42 A truck backed into the propellor of VH-ADS at Wau damaging the prop and cracking the crankcase of the engine. (Source: James Sinclair, Wings of Gold p.295)
28JAN42 VH-ADT (Captain Mant) was scheduled to leave Sydney at 1200 with a replacement engine and propellor for VH-ADS. VH-ADT did not depart Sydney until 1630 after awaiting the delivery of a propellor from Richmond and dismantling it for carriage. (Source: 1)
29JAN42 VH-ADT arrived at Port Moresby having overnighted en route. (Source: 1)
30JAN42 VH-ADT Ferried the engine and propellor and four mechanics to Wau to repair the damaged VH-ADS. (Source: James Sinclair, Wings of Gold p.295)
01FEB42 During the first air raid on Wau, VH-ADS was still undergoing repairs. (Source: 1)
The aircraft escaped damage during the air raid because it was being repaired inside the Stephens hangar. (Source: 2)
02FEB42 VH-ADS departed Wau for Port Moresby after the completion of repairs. The damaged propellor blades and engine were left behind at Wau. (Source: 1)
03FEB42 VH-ADS and VH-ADT departed Port Moresby at dawn for the mainland. (Source: 1)
03FEB42 VH-ADT arrived at Cairns at 0933 followed by the repaired VH-ADS which arrived at 0950. Both aircraft were ordered to return to Sydney for servicing and resumption of services Sydney-Port Moresby plus other duties. (Source: 1)
12FEB42 Returned to Sydney with engine trouble soon after departure.
13FEB42 Operated Cairns-Wau-Port Moresby-Wau-Cairns on evacuation flights. (Capt K. Jackson).
14FEB42 Crashed into mangrove swamps in bad weather soon after take-off from Cairns for Wau to uplift evacuees. Captain E.D. Crisp and Captain C. Bernard were killed.
FEB42 Struck off the Register as "Crashed while engaged in military work under direction of RAAF." Subsequently, W.R. Carpenter were paid £25,000 compensation by the War Damages Commission for the loss of the aircraft.


Sources
1
NAA MP238/1, Item 8/115/300 “Evacuation from New Guinea Subsequent to Enemy Attacks 21st-22nd January 1942”. Accessed by Trevor Boughton.
2
Diary of the New Guinea Volunteer Rifles. John Winterbotham www.australian-pow-ww2.com. Accessed by Trevor Boughton.


Issue Date Remarks
6 18SEP16
Given that VH-ADS survived for less than one year, photographs of the aircraft are rare. Thanks to Bob Livingstone I have added three images taken by Harry Broe.Image 1 Image 2 Image 3
5 03APR16
Refreshed page layout with no changes to data.
4 21OCT12
Added details from Source 2 thanks to Trevor Boughton.
3 07SEP12
Added details from Source 1 thanks to Trevor Boughton.
2 14APR12
Corrected the date that VH-ADT flew spares to Wau for the damaged VH-ADS from 30JAN42 to 31JAN42. Thanks to Trevor Boughton.
1 18FEB00
Original issue.




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