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ASN Wikibase Occurrence # 65475
Last updated: 2 June 2020
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Time:c. 1210
Type:Blackburn Baffin
Owner/operator:RNZAF (Royal New Zealand Air Force)
Registration: NZ152
C/n / msn: 2690/7
Fatalities:Fatalities: 3 / Occupants: 3
Other fatalities:0
Aircraft damage: Written off (damaged beyond repair)
Location:In sea about 500 yards off Waimairi Beach, Christchurch -   New Zealand
Phase: Unknown
Departure airport:Wigram AFB
Destination airport:
The Blackburn Baffin was evolved in 1932 as a version of the earlier Ripon torpedo bomber, with a 545 hp Pegasus I MS engine replacing the Napier Lion engines of the Ripon. In 1937, New Zealand acquired 29 of the best condition Baffins from the UK to equip Territorial Air Force (reserve) squadrons in Auckland, Wellington, and Christchurch. Twenty-four were operational on the outbreak of war, 16 in Wellington and eight in Christchurch. On the outbreak of war, these aircraft were utilised as trainers.

On 5 February 1940 the Baffin NZ152 took off at 1210 hrs from Wigram airfield. It stalled in a turn at about 700 feet and spun into the sea about 500 yards off Waimairi Beach, Christchurch, about six miles from Christchurch City. An hour after the crash the machine was still afloat, but watchers from the beaches could see no sign of life aboard it. The three men aboard were all killed. The wreckage of the aircraft was pulled ashore later that evening.

Crew (all killed):
Flt Lt Arthur Darval Poulton (pilot, 41, of West Eyreton)
AC1 Douglas Haig Birbeck (23, of Barbadoes Street, Christchurch)
AC1 William James Reynold Strachan (air gunner, 33, of Roxburgh)

Originally built as a Ripon Mk.IIA the aircraft had previously served under the serial S1430 with Fleet Air Arm, being coded "83". It arrived in Auckland on the "Napier Star" in mid-November 1937 and was barged to Hobsonville for assembly at No.1 Aircraft Depot.


Revision history:

11-Jun-2009 01:24 angels one five Added
01-Oct-2009 20:05 angels one five Updated
07-Jun-2013 23:51 angels one five Updated [Aircraft type, Registration, Cn, Operator, Location, Departure airport, Narrative]
06-Feb-2016 08:25 Laurent Rizzotti Updated [Source, Narrative]
27-Aug-2018 17:45 Nepa Updated [Operator]
26-Sep-2019 05:57 angels one five Updated [Narrative]

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