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ASN Wikibase Occurrence # 49580
Last updated: 8 May 2020
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Time:14:30 LT
Type:Silhouette image of generic SPIT model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Supermarine Spitfire Mk IX
Owner/operator:602 (City of Glasgow) Squadron Royal Air Force (602 (City of Glasgow) Sqn RAF)
Registration: NH150
C/n / msn: LO-
Fatalities:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 1
Aircraft damage: Written off (damaged beyond repair)
Location:2e Dwarsweg road, Weesperkarspel, Noord-Holland -   Netherlands
Phase: Combat
Departure airport:RAF Swannington, Norfolk
Destination airport:
On 2 December 1944 the morning reconnaissances over the Netherlands found low clouds and reported that the weather was unsuitable for dive-bombing missions. But strafing attacks could be made and 602 Sqn RAF laid on an armed recce over the Haagsche Boscj by four Spitfire IX flown by Flg Off Farrell, Flt Lt G Y L Lloyd, Wt Off Toone and Wt Off J R "Roy" Karasek. This would be last operations flown by 602’s Spitfire IXs, the squadron having started to re-equip with Spitfire XVIs.

Farrell had to return early, but the three remaining pilots crossed in over Katwijk and headed straight for the target area, which they attacked without any obvious results. Then they made for Overmeer, where they found a bowser truck towing a bowser trailer, which they attacked. As they completed the first pass, Karasek called up on the R/T to say that he was in trouble and the others watched as his Spitfire IX NH150 made what seemed to be a normal approach for an emergency belly landing in a field about half a mile away from the scene of the attack. A few seconds later, they saw the Spitfire on the ground in flames. They attacked the bowser again twice, then turned back to base. They had no idea what had happened to Karasek.

The cause of the crash was the Spitfire’s overload tank slung under fuselage. They were not popular with the pilots, particularly once they reached about half full because the petrol would slosh about and affect the handling, but they did allow them to reach the target areas. As the basic rule was not to go into action with overload tanks, when the leader gave the order to attack the bowser truck, Karasek tried to jettison the overload tank, but the lever enabling it would not budge. Everything seemed to be in order, so Karasek decided to carry on with the attack, dived down with the others and strafed the vehicles. But, when he was more or less at the bottom of his dive, the engine cut. There was no Flak and the pilot did not hear or feel anything that would suggest a lucky bullet had hid his Spitfire.

Karasek knew he had no height to bale out and had no choice other than to crash land. He struggled like mad to try to get the wretched jettison lever to work, but all to no avail. After a brief call on the R/T to say he was in trouble, he prepared for the coming crash-landing: check the wind direction, turn ignition switches to ’off’ (even if the engine had died, it was the usual procedure and an automatic move for him) and tighten the seat belts until they hurt (he had hit his nose very badly on the gunsight on a previous crash landing). He then concentrated on the landing itself. The field was not big and surrounded by some trees. As he came to land, he heard the tops of the trees hitting the leading edge of the wing and thought he could not have been any lover. And then nothing.

Karasek woke up lying on his back on the ground with no idea what had happened to him. Hearing strange noises and turning his head, he saw his Spitfire about 20 yards away engulfed in flames, with the ammunition ’cooking off’. The aircraft had probably exploded on impact, throwing him out despite the harness straps. After a while he heard voices and some people arrived. One man lifted his head and gave him a drink of schnapps or brandy. And someone helped him to release the parachute that he was still wearing. He then passed out again.

Karasek was lifted and carried to a farmhouse, passing in and out several times. As he was lying on a small bed, a woman camme over and asked hil if he wanted to escape, which suddenly brought him back to life and alertness. But German soldiers arrived at the same time and he was taken in a horse-drawn cart and then an ambulance to an hospital in Amsterdam, where he was examined by three doctors. By how he had pains in his spine and knees and a ’most fearful’ headache. He was more or less back to normal the next day and then tried unsuccessfully to escape, suffering solitary confinement in prison in Amsterdam as a punishment before being sent to a POW camp. He returned home after the war ended


"Spitfire Dive-Bombers versus the V2", by Bill Simpson. ISBN 9781844155712
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Revision history:

17-Dec-2008 11:45 ASN archive Added
06-Nov-2017 18:16 Laurent Rizzotti Updated [Aircraft type]
22-Nov-2018 09:06 Laurent Rizzotti Updated [Operator, Total fatalities, Total occupants, Phase, Source, Narrative]
22-Oct-2019 16:48 TigerTimon Updated [Time, Cn, Location, Departure airport, Source]
05-Nov-2019 17:20 Nepa Updated [Operator, Operator]

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