ASN logo
ASN Wikibase Occurrence # 20151
Last updated: 26 November 2021
This information is added by users of ASN. Neither ASN nor the Flight Safety Foundation are responsible for the completeness or correctness of this information. If you feel this information is incomplete or incorrect, you can submit corrected information.

Type:Silhouette image of generic VAMP model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
de Havilland DH.100 Vampire FB Mk 5
Owner/operator:608 (North Riding) Squadron Royal Air Force (608 (North Riding) Sqn RAF)
Registration: WA404
MSN: EE/P/42254
Fatalities:Fatalities: 1 / Occupants: 1
Other fatalities:0
Aircraft damage: Written off (damaged beyond repair)
Location:near Old Lackenby, 8 miles ENE of RAF Thornaby, Yorkshire -   United Kingdom
Phase: En route
Departure airport:RAF Thornaby, North Yorkshire
Destination airport:
DH Vampire FB 5 WA404: Built by English Electric and awaiting collection on 21st May 1951. Delivered to the Central Gunnery School, Leconfield, 23 May 1951 as/becoming 'FJW-P'

Flying Accident (Cat 4(R)) 2nd October 1951: Pilot became lost after reading reciprocal compass bearing and belly landed, out of fuel. Pilot: Flying Officer J Ursulak, RCAF.

To Marshalls at Teversham, Cambridge, for repairs 20th November 1951 and awaiting collection on 24th September 1952. Delivered No.608 (North Riding) Squadron, RAuxAF, Thornaby, 29 September 1952, as/becoming 'RAO-K' (later 'K')

Took off at 10.42 hours on 21st February 1954 on a dull day to carry out re-familiarisation flight on type. At 20,000 feet problems occurred, during practice stall, the engine would not restart, and at 4,000 feet called on radio to say he was baling out. Aircraft dived into the ground vertically near Old Lackenby, 8 miles East-North-East of RAF Thornaby, Yorkshire.

Body of pilot found a few feet away attached to unopened parachute. It was thought he baled out moments before impact but was killed when chute failed. Crash investigation concluded that he would possibly have survived had he been more experienced on aircraft type and had remembered correct way to bale out, jettison canopy and invert aircraft.

Pilot: Pilot Officer Ronald Webster R.Aux.AF (pilot, Service Number 3135026, aged 24) - killed

He had only ten hours flying on the Vampire. WA404 was formally struck off charge 22nd February 1954 (next day) as Cat.5(FA)


1. Halley, James (1999) Broken Wings Post-War Royal Air Force Accidents Tunbridge Wells: Air-Britain (Historians) Ltd. p.155 ISBN 0-85130-290-4
2. Royal Air Force Aircraft WA100-WZ999 (James J Halley, Air Britain, 1983 p 10)
3. Category Five; A Catalogue of RAF Aircraft Losses 1954 to 2009 by Colin Cummings p.35


DH Vampire WA404 "FJWP" when with the CGS at Leconfield in 1951: The Aviation Photo Company: Vampire (De Havilland) &emdash; RAF CGS De Havilland Vampire FB.5 WA404

Revision history:

29-May-2008 02:39 JINX Added
08-Jun-2008 14:38 JINX Updated
18-Jan-2012 07:18 Nepa Updated [Time, Operator, Location, Departure airport, Source, Narrative]
18-Jan-2012 09:35 Nepa Updated [Aircraft type, Operator, Source]
05-Jan-2015 02:41 Dr. John Smith Updated [Aircraft type, Cn, Operator, Location, Departure airport, Source, Embed code, Narrative]
10-Jan-2020 22:16 stehlik49 Updated [Aircraft type, Operator]
05-Apr-2020 22:38 Dr. John Smith Updated [Source, Embed code, Narrative]
05-Apr-2020 22:42 Dr. John Smith Updated [Narrative]

Corrections or additions? ... Edit this accident description