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ASN Wikibase Occurrence # 212242
Last updated: 27 November 2021
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Date:22-JUN-1927
Time:10:00 LT
Type:Fairey IIID
Owner/operator:Leuchars Trg Base Flt Royal Air Force (Leuchars Trg Base Flt RAF)
Registration: S1094
MSN: F.833
Fatalities:Fatalities: 1 / Occupants: 1
Other fatalities:0
Aircraft damage: Written off (damaged beyond repair)
Location:Binn Cottage, 412 Perth Road, Dundee, Tayside, Scotland -   United Kingdom
Phase: Initial climb
Nature:Military
Departure airport:RAF Leuchars, Fife
Destination airport:
Narrative:
Fairey IIID S1094, RAF, Leuchars: Written off (destroyed) 22/6/1927 when crashed into a garden after engine failure at Binn Cottage, 412 Perth Road, Dundee, Tayside. Pilot - and sole occupant - Flying Officer Rawdon Frank Gerald Salmond (Lt, RN, aged 23) - was killed. Pilot apparently died later the same day of injuries sustained, and not instantaneously at the crash site. According to a contemporary newspaper report ("Dundee Courier" - Thursday 23 June 1927)

'PLANE WRECKED IN DUNDEE.
LEUCHARS AIRMAN DIES FROM INJURIES.
Eye-Witnesses' Stories of Pilot's Last Flight.

A fatal aeroplane accident occurred in the west end of Dundee yesterday. The victim was Lieutenant R. F. G. Salmond, R N., attached R.A.F., Leuchars. At the time he was flying a Fairy 3D machine. The 'plane crashed in the garden of Mr P. H. Thoms, architect, Binn Cottage, 412 Perth Road, and was wrecked. Lieutenant Salmond was extricated from the wreckage in an unconscious condition suffering from a fractured skull, fractured left leg, and other injuries. He was conveyed to the Royal Infirmary, arriving within half an hour from the time of the crash. So serious were his injuries that he died in the institution shortly after eleven o'clock.

In Difficulties.
About ten o'clock many people heard the noise of an aeroplane engine, which did not seem to be functioning too well, and the machine was observed flying very low. The pilot was then steering over the houses at the foot of Windsor Street and Fort Street. Still at a low altitude Lieut. Salmond guided his machine in a north-westerly direction. He got no farther than Clarendon Terrace when it became apparent to those who were watching him that he was in difficulties. The 'plane was back-firing heavily, and eye-witnesses became greatly alarmed for its safety.

The Crash.
Then, to their horror, the machine was seen to fall, crashing into Mr Thoms' garden. It came down on top of a small apple tree, narrowly missing the taller trees on the east side and the house itself. An immediate rush was made to the scene by those in the neighbourhood. A painful spectacle met their eyes. The 'plane was a mass of wreckage, and strapped to the seat was Lieut. Salmond unconscious and bleeding from the head. The work of releasing the injured man was undertaken under the supervision of Thoms, who was in the vicinity when the accident occurred and hurried to the scene. Tools were got from Binn Cottage, and the work of rescue was begun, workmen engaged in housebuilding in the neighbourhood and from the circus at present on the Esplanade taking part.

Releasing the Airman.
Working hard with hammers, saws and crowbars they cut into the fuselage, but it took a considerable time release the injured airman, the 'plane having to be practically cut in two before he was extricated. First-aid was at hand, this being rendered by Mrs McDougall and several of the nurses from Fort House Nursing Home. Dr Rogers, who had been visiting a patient in the nursing home was also quickly on the scene, and did all possible in the circumstances, and accompanied Lieut. Salmond to the Infirmary in the ambulance van. Eye-witnesses of the accident are in agreement that it was primarily due to engine trouble. And the circumstance noted and commented upon was the low altitude at which the aeroplane was flying.

Residents' Alarm.
Lieutenant Salmond was acquainted with the family of Mr H. J. M. Thoms, Crescent House, Windsor Street, and on recent visits he had been in the habit of flying so low that he could wave his hand to his friends. The altitude at which the pilot was in the practice of flying over the west end of the city had given rise to serious apprehension on the part of residents, as it was felt it was attended with serious risks. Shortly before ten o'clock yesterday morning Lieutenant Salmond was seen passing over the houses at the foot of Windsor Street and Fort Street. He had gone as far as Clarendon Terrace, and was turning again southward when acute trouble appeared to develop.

Turned Somersault.
Mrs D. K. Symington, 13 Clarendon Terrace, was looking out of a window at her house at the time, and to her it seemed as if the aeroplane had turned a somersault over her house. A few moments later came the terrific crash of the machine falling in Binn Cottage garden. Mr Norman Moncur, gardener at Fort House, saw the aeroplane coming down the river flying very low. The engine was back firing heavily, and as the machine passed over the house the propeller was hardly going round. The pilot whee'ed (?) twice, and it appeared to Mr Moncur that he was endeavouring to make a landing on the Esplanade, but he turned and came north again. Immediately after he passed Fort House the crash came.

A Hand Wave.
George Strachan, 16 South Lindsay Street, who was working in the market garden to the south of Binn Cottage, noticed the pilot wave his hand as the 'plane came down from Clarendon Terrace. He had previously observed that the airman was having trouble with his engine, and he took the wave of the hand to indicate that things were now all right. Mr P. H. Thoms when on his way to a garage at Gowrie Street observed that the aeroplane seemed to have developed engine trouble. He remarked to a man in the garage that the engine didn't seem to sound right at all. A few seconds after this the disaster happened. Mary Anderson, a maid servant at Binn Cottage, was working in a room in the west wing of the house when she heard the crash. She looked out of the window and was horror-struck by the sight that confronted her. Recovering, she rushed into the garden, where she was quickly joined by other people from the vicinity.

Dog's Dash to Safety.
A dog belonging to Mr Thoms, which had been outside when the crash occurred, ran in terror into the house and sought sanctuary under a bed. Two R.A.F. officers from Leuchars arrived about an hour after the accident, and were engaged for some time in inspecting the wrecked aeroplane, and in making inquiries. The deceased officer, who was 24 years of age, had been stationed at Leuchars for about six months, and was to have left for duty in China shortly. His parents are in Singapore. Lieutenant Salmond was an occasional player in the R.A.F. Rugby team last season"

Sources:

1. http://www.rcawsey.co.uk/Acc1929.htm
2. http://www.rafcommands.com/forum/showthread.php?17307-RAF-fatalities-1927
3. http://sussexhistoryforum.co.uk/index.php?topic=5155.0
4. http://www.naval-history.net/xDKCas1927.htm


Revision history:

Date/timeContributorUpdates
15-Jun-2018 19:29 Dr. John Smith Added
27-May-2021 20:02 Anon. Updated [Operator, Location, Operator]

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