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ASN Wikibase Occurrence # 157703
Last updated: 23 July 2020
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Type:de Havilland DH.110 Sea Vixen FAW.2
Owner/operator:899 Sqn FAA RN
Registration: XS579
C/n / msn: 10137
Fatalities:Fatalities: 2 / Occupants: 2
Other fatalities:0
Aircraft damage: Written off (damaged beyond repair)
Location:HMS Eagle, South China Sea, at 14-30N, 119-5.5E -   Hong Kong
Phase: Manoeuvring (airshow, firefighting, ag.ops.)
Departure airport:HMS Eagle, off Hong Kong
Destination airport:
Written off 9/4/1968: Crashed into the sea during a simulated attack on the RFA Reliant splash target whilst operating from HMS Eagle. Making a Glowworm ground attack (by lighting rocket flares) XS579 failed to pull out of a 20-degree dive, probably due to pilot disorientation, and crashed into the South China Sea at approximate co-ordinates 14'30"N, 119'55"E. Both crew killed:

Lt. Creswell Swann (navigator)
Lt. Hedley James Williams (pilot)

The carrier was in the South China Sea off Hong Kong en route to Cape Town, South Africa. (Sailed Hong Kong 6/4/1968, arrived Capetown 31/5/1968 after en extended period on the "Beira Patrol" off the coast of Mozambique)

Per eyewitness report: "One unpleasant memory was the crash of April 1968. The Sea Vixen was 132/E of 899 Sqn. I distinctly remember eyeballing the Pilot as FDO (Flight Deck Officer) wound him up for launch. Minutes later they were dead. I Believe he followed his rockets in on the 'splash target' astern. I have never ever forgotten that and what we pulled out of the oggin (sea), and the impression of how we carried on flying. I told myself that "Yes, they will be missed" but we are a carrier, itís what we do, we carry on in spite of what happened, not stopping because of it. So to 'keep on flying' has a deep meaning to me."



Revision history:

21-Jul-2013 05:37 Dr. John Smith Added

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