ASN logo
ASN Wikibase Occurrence # 241009
Last updated: 29 November 2021
This information is added by users of ASN. Neither ASN nor the Flight Safety Foundation are responsible for the completeness or correctness of this information. If you feel this information is incomplete or incorrect, you can submit corrected information.

Type:Silhouette image of generic FFLY model; specific model in this crash may look slightly different
Fairey Firefly U Mk 9
Owner/operator:728B Sqn FAA RN
Registration: WB391
MSN: F.8588
Fatalities:Fatalities: 0 / Occupants: 0
Other fatalities:0
Aircraft damage: Written off (damaged beyond repair)
Location:Mediterranean Sea, off RNAS Hal Far. -   Malta
Phase: En route
Departure airport:HMS Falcon, RNAS Hal Far, Malta
Destination airport:
Fairey Firefly U.9 Drone WB391: Delivered to Fairey Aircraft Ltd., Ringway Airport, Manchester 17/5/1956 for conversion from Firefly FR.5 to U.9 drone. First flown as a Firefly U.9 on 1/2/1957 at Ringway Airport, Manchester. Delivered to Short Brothers & Harland Ltd at RAE Llanbedr 26/7/1957.

Damaged when ground-looped on landing at RAE Llanbedr 17/2/1958. Damaged assessed as Cat.4(R), and returned to Fairey Aircraft at Ringway for repairs 12/6/1958. Upon completion of repairs, ferried to HMS Heron, RNAS Yeovilton, Ilchester, Somerset 27/9/1960 for ferry/delivery flight to Malta. Arrived at HMS Falcon, RNAS Hal Far, Malta, 28/9/1960 and issued to 728B Squadron FAA RN coded "598/HF".

Written off (destroyed) 27/11/1961; Destroyed when shot down by the guns of HMS Dutchess and crashed into the Mediterranean Sea, off Hal Far, Malta.

Formally Struck Off Charge as Cat.ZZ on 27/11/1961. Total flying time on airframe as a Firefly U.9: 61.25 hours. Firefly U.9 WB391 is noteworthy as being the very last Firefly U.9 drone of 728B Squadron FAA to be shot down off Hal Far, Malta, as the squadron disbanded six days later (2/12/1961) and the Firefly U.9 programme ended


1. Fleet Air Arm Fixed Wing Aircraft Since 1946 (Ray Sturtivant, Lee Howard & Mick Burrows, Air Britain, 2004 p.281-282)

Revision history:

07-Sep-2020 17:25 Dr. John Smith Added
07-Sep-2020 20:56 Koumes Updated [Aircraft type, Operator, Location, Operator]
08-Sep-2020 16:59 Dr. John Smith Updated [Narrative]

Corrections or additions? ... Edit this accident description