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ASN Wikibase Occurrence # 27163
Last updated: 22 June 2020
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Date:11-JUN-1939
Time:
Type:Silhouette image of generic DH60 model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
de Havilland DH.60 Moth
Owner/operator:Australian National Airways
Registration: VH-UNP
C/n / msn: 1407
Fatalities:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 2
Other fatalities:1
Aircraft damage: Written off (damaged beyond repair)
Location:Essendon, Melbourne -   Australia
Phase: Take off
Nature:Cargo
Departure airport:Essendon, Melbourne (MEB/YMEN)
Destination airport:
Narrative:
DH.60M [Gipsy I] sold to DH Australia with C of A 2190 issued 6.9.29. Registered as VH-UNP [C of R 365] 17.3.30 to QANTAS Ltd, Longreach. Registration cancelled 1.6.30. Already sold 5.4.30 and re- registered (in Sept 1930) to Queensland Air Navigation Ltd, Brisbane. Re-registered 20.6.31 to G McCausland, Townsville. Registration cancelled 7.10.31; registration restored 5.9.32 to same owner.

Registered 15.9.33 to Northern Flying Service, Essendon, Melbourne, Victoria (later Camooweal, Queensland). Registered 8.10.34 to R J Bartle, Maylands [later Archerfield]. The aircraft had an accident on 18.11.34 when it spun into the ground while landing at West Subiaco aerodrome, Perth, Western Austrlia. The pilot, R.J. Bartle sustained head injuries and shock, but was not seriously injured.

The Moth was repaired and re-registered (presumably on or after resale) 18.5.36 to Holyman's Airways Pty Ltd, Launceston. Re-registered 25.11.36 to Australian National Airways Pty Ltd, Essendon, Melbourne, Victoria.

Written off (damaged beyond repair) when destroyed by fire following a ground collision with taxying DH.60G Moth VH-UHS on take-off from Essendon, Melbourne, Victoria 11.6.39 and registration cancelled same day. According to a contemporary newspaper report (The Melbourne Argus for 12 June 1939):

"PLANES BURNT, NINE PEOPLE INJURED. WOMEN PILOTS IN DROME COLLISION

The accident happened on Sunday 11 June, when Gertrude McKenzie was on a take-off run in the Australian National Airways-owned de Havilland DH-60, VH-UNP. Her aircraft collided with the Royal Victorian Aero Club DH-60, VH-UHS, which was also taxiing to take-off. The two aircraft locked together and burst into flames. The pilot of VH-UHS, Miss Florence Wurts, was trapped in the wreckage for several minutes, suffering extensive burns before being freed. Tragically, she died in hospital the next day.

Mrs. McKenzie and Miss Wurts were taking boys from the St. Vincent de Paul Orphanage for joy flights. The two boys in the aircraft received relatively minor injuries. The other five victims received burns ranging from slight to severe in their attempts to rescue Miss Wurts from the burning wreckage. Gertrude McKenzie received a cut on the head and shock. Both DH.60s were destroyed."

Sources:

1. http://www.airwaysmuseum.com/DH60%20VH-UHS.htm
2. http://www.edcoatescollection.com/ac1/austu/VH-UNP.html
3. http://www.airhistory.org.uk/gy/reg_VH-U.html
4. http://web.archive.org/web/20081122030644/http://www.baaa-acro.com/Pays/A/Australie-1930-1939.htm
5. http://www.australianflying.com.au/news/gertrude-mac-mckenzie-forgotten-aviation-pioneer-honoured
6. http://afleetingpeace.org/index.php/aeroplanes/15-aeroplanes/84-register-australia


Related books:

Revision history:

Date/timeContributorUpdates
27-Sep-2008 01:00 ASN archive Added
23-Jan-2014 02:45 Dr. John Smith Updated [Cn, Total occupants, Other fatalities, Location, Phase, Nature, Departure airport, Source, Damage, Narrative]
23-Jan-2014 02:48 Dr. John Smith Updated [Narrative]

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