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ASN Wikibase Occurrence # 164703
Last updated: 29 November 2021
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Type:Silhouette image of generic VNOM model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
de Havilland DH.112 Sea Venom FAW.21
Owner/operator:894 Sqn FAA RN
Registration: XG614
MSN: 12905
Fatalities:Fatalities: 2 / Occupants: 2
Other fatalities:1
Aircraft damage: Written off (damaged beyond repair)
Location:HMS Albion, Mediterranean Sea, 7 miles SE of Hal Far, Malta -   Malta
Phase: Manoeuvring (airshow, firefighting, ag.ops.)
Departure airport:HMS Albion, Mediterranean Sea off Malta
Destination airport:
On 15/03/1960, XG614 ("A-491) and XG723 ("A-490"), two De Havilland Sea Venom FAW.22s of 894 NAS FAA RN crashed while conducting night airborne interception exercises; the two aircraft collided and crashed into the Mediterranean Sea 7 miles south east of Hal Far, Malta. The accident was seen by a crew member on HMS Ark Royal who raised the alarm.

Of the four crew (two per aircraft), two ejected safely: Lt. R. W. N. Riley (pilot) and S/Lt J. D. Brown (observer) ejected from XG723 at 6,000ft at 210 knots, and suffered slight injuries. Both crew were rescued by the "plane guard" helicopter from HMS Ark Royal.

The two crew members flying XG614, A/Sub-Lt Richard J Loe (pilot) and A/Sub-Lt Alexander G Smyth, (observer) were initially listed as missing. An airborne search was conducted, and the search area later widened owing to strong winds and currents, but the two were never found. It is not known if they ejected and drowned or if the were killed in the collision.

894 Squadron FAA RN was shore-based at Hal-Far, Malta, at the time of the accident, having detached from HMS Albion for a ten day exercise with several other similar types.


1. Fleet Air Arm Fixed Wing Aircraft Since 1946 (Ray Sturtivant, Lee Howard & Mick Burrows, Air Britain, 2004 p.193)
7. .

Revision history:

14-Mar-2014 22:35 Dr. John Smith Added
26-Mar-2014 18:57 Nepa Updated [Operator]
13-May-2014 19:35 RichardLoe Updated [Phase, Narrative]
29-Aug-2020 00:07 Dr. John Smith Updated [Aircraft type, Total fatalities, Source, Narrative]
29-Aug-2020 00:08 Dr. John Smith Updated [Source, Narrative]

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