Aircraft Wrecks off Iba field in the PI

Discussion in 'Aviation' started by oldcrowcv63, Feb 24, 2012.

  1. oldcrowcv63

    oldcrowcv63 Well-Known Member

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    #1 oldcrowcv63, Feb 24, 2012
    Last edited: Feb 24, 2012
    There is an account in Bartsch, Doomed at the Start, wherein 1st Lt. Herbert S. Ellis, describes attacking a number of zeros strafing Iba field about 1 PM on December 8, 1941. The account states he made four passes (although his guns were working on only the first 3) and observed on his last 5 :!: A6M aircraft lying in the shallow water offshore parallel with the traffic pattern, as an indication of his success. I can imagine that he may have included 1st. Fred Roberts' P-40 which apparently ditched in a similar location at about the same time in his count. He may also have counted the same aircraft on each pass assuming it was a different aircraft, although that's not how the story is related. It seems to suggest Ellis made the count on his 4rth and final pass. Japanese sources indicate the possibility of two A6M aircraft being lost at this time (Bartsch footnotes).

    I have read that Robert's P-40 can be found offshore. I am wondering if anyone has been diving near Iba field and found any A6M wrecks lying just offshore or heard of such wrecks being found. I would imagine it would not be a technical dive but could be accomplished with snorkel.

    Philippine Airfields

    A long shot but thought I'd post given that the PI seems to be a favorite tourist snorkeling spot.

    OC
     
  2. FLYBOYJ

    FLYBOYJ "THE GREAT GAZOO"
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  3. syscom3

    syscom3 Pacific Historian

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    johnbr Well-Known Member

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  5. oldcrowcv63

    oldcrowcv63 Well-Known Member

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    #5 oldcrowcv63, Feb 24, 2012
    Last edited: Feb 24, 2012
    I've looked at Google Earth and the water looks really clear. There are some general aviation aircraft that can be seen on the ramp at Iba and provide a scale for assessing the size of suggestive shadows in the water. I don't think anything can be seen that can be reliably identified as an aircraft the size of a P-40 or A6M. Of course, I have no idea what the currents might be like there or the shark sitiation. Its been years (1982) since I was in the vicinity (at the USN San Miguel Comm Station about 25 miles south of Iba) and didn't go swimming on that coast during the brief time there.
     
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