List of Qantas fatal accidents

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Short S.23 Empire flying boat VH-ABB, which crashed in 1944.

While Qantas has never had a fatal jet airliner accident, the Australian national airline suffered several losses in its early days before the widespread adoption of the jet engine in civilian aviation.[1] These were mainly biplanes or flying boats servicing routes in Queensland and New Guinea.[2] The incidents between 1942 and 1944 were during World War II, when Qantas Empire Airways operated on behalf of the military.[3] While strictly speaking not accidents, the shooting-down of G-AETZ and G-AEUH are included for completeness. In 2014, Qantas was rated the world's safest airline by Airline Ratings.[4]

Date Location Aircraft type Registration Description Aboard Fatalities References
24 March 1927 Tambo, Australia Airco (later de Havilland) DH.9C G-AUED Stalled at low altitude on approach to land. Pilot Alan Douglas Davidson 3 3 [5][6]
4 September 1928 Adelaide Hills, Australia de Havilland DH.50J G-AUHI Following a tour carrying Sir John Salmond, aircraft departed Adelaide piloted by C. W. A. Scott with engineer as passenger; lost control in cloud during attempt to cross the Adelaide Hills and aircraft crashed and caught fire killing the engineer. See C. W. A. Scott's DH.50J Hermes, fatal crash. 2 1 [7]
3 October 1934 Near Winton, Australia de Havilland DH.50A VH-UHE Crashed after in-flight loss of control, possibly stalled at low altitude in dusty low-visibility conditions. 3 3 [8]
15 November 1934 Near Longreach, Australia de Havilland DH.86 VH-USG Crashed on its delivery flight from England to Brisbane after in-flight loss of control, probably due to the type's design deficiencies. 4 4 [9][10][11][12][13]
30 January 1942 Timor Sea off Kupang Short S.23 Empire Flying Boat G-AEUH Shot down by Japanese aircraft; ex-Qantas VH-ABD, owned by Imperial Airways and operated by Qantas. 18 13 [3][14][15]
20 February 1942 Brisbane, Australia de Havilland DH.86 VH-USE Lost control after take-off in stormy weather, possibly broke-up in flight (tail fin found a mile from the crash site). 9 9 [16][17][18][19]
28 February 1942 Between Tjilatjap, Netherlands East Indies and Broome, Australia Short S.23 Empire Flying Boat G-AETZ Shot down by Japanese aircraft; owned by Imperial Airways and operated by Qantas. 20 20 [20]
22 April 1943 Gulf of Papua off Port Moresby, Papua Short S.23 Empire Flying Boat VH-ADU Stalled in flare and broke up during emergency landing in open water in poor weather. 31 13 [15][21]
26 November 1943 Port Moresby, Papua Lockheed C-56B Lodestar 42-68348 Struck hill after take-off; USAAF aircraft operated by Qantas for Allied Directorate of Air Transport. 15 15 [22][23]
11 October 1944 Rose Bay, Sydney, Australia Short S.23 Empire Flying Boat VH-ABB On final approach with one engine shut-down, stalled 3 metres (10 ft) above the water and hull ruptured on impact. 30 1 [15][24][25]
23 March 1946 Indian Ocean Avro Lancastrian G-AGLX Aircraft disappeared between Colombo and the Cocos (Keeling) Islands, cause unknown; aircraft owned by BOAC and operated by both airlines on Sydney-London services (BOAC crews operated London-Karachi and Qantas crews Karachi-Sydney). 10 10 [26][27]
16 July 1951 Huon Gulf near Lae, Papua New Guinea de Havilland Australia DHA-3 Drover VH-EBQ Crashed in sea after centre propeller failure. 7 7 [28]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ Creedy, Steve (2008-02-12). "Qantas safety record under threat". The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 2008-05-14. 
  2. ^ "History: Venturing Overseas". Qantas Airways Limited. Archived from the original on 2008-05-01. Retrieved 2008-05-14. 
  3. ^ a b "History: The World at War". Qantas Airways Limited. Archived from the original on 2008-05-01. Retrieved 2008-05-14. 
  4. ^ Geoffrey, Thomas. "AirlineRatings.com names the top ten safest airlines". http://www.airlineratings.com/news/201/qantas-the-safest-airline. Airline Ratings. Retrieved 6 August 2014. 
  5. ^ "G-AUED Airco aeroplane". John Oxley Library, State Library of Queensland. Retrieved 2008-05-13. 
  6. ^ Kebabjian, Richard (1997–2008). "24 Mar 1927". Retrieved 2008-05-13. 
  7. ^ Fysh, Sir Wilmot Hudson (1965). pp. 196--197, p. 285.
  8. ^ "Atalanta, a De Havilland DH50 biplane VH-UHE, ca. 1930". John Oxley Library, State Library of Queensland. Retrieved 2008-05-13. 
  9. ^ "QANTAS DH 86 VH - USG at Darwin airport with crew". Northern Territory Library and Information Service. Retrieved 2008-05-13. [dead link]
  10. ^ "Aeroplane". Northern Territory Library and Information Service. Retrieved 2008-05-13. [dead link]
  11. ^ "Airmen". Northern Territory Library and Information Service. Retrieved 2008-05-13. [dead link]
  12. ^ "Aeroplane". Northern Territory Library and Information Service. Retrieved 2008-05-13. [dead link]
  13. ^ Kebabjian, Richard (1997–2008). "15 Nov 1934". Retrieved 2008-05-13. 
  14. ^ "Papers of Ray Shepherd, File A20, ACC G-AEUH". Northern Territory Library and Information Service. Retrieved 2008-05-13. 
  15. ^ a b c Graham, Wynnum B. (2001). Retrieved on 2008-05-13.
  16. ^ "De Havilland 86A owned by Qantas Empire Airways, ca. 1940". John Oxley Library, State Library of Queensland. Retrieved 2008-05-13. 
  17. ^ "Qantas DH86". Northern Territory Library and Information Service. Retrieved 2008-05-13. [dead link]
  18. ^ "Qantas DH86". Northern Territory Library and Information Service. Retrieved 2008-05-13. [dead link]
  19. ^ Kebabjian, Richard (1997–2008). "20 Feb 1942". Retrieved 2008-05-13. 
  20. ^ Pacific Wreck website
  21. ^ "AWM Collection Record: P02557.009". Australian War Memorial Collection. Retrieved 2008-05-13. 
  22. ^ Cuskelly, Ron (1997–2000). "Lodestar". Retrieved 2008-05-13. 
  23. ^ Francillon, Rene J. (1987).
  24. ^ "Aeroplane". Northern Territory Library and Information Service. Retrieved 2008-05-13. [dead link]
  25. ^ "Qantas Short C Class Empire flying boat VH-ABB 'Coolangatta', ca. 1940". John Oxley Library, State Library of Queensland. Retrieved 2008-05-13. 
  26. ^ Livingstone, Bob (1998). p. 122.
  27. ^ Ranter, Harro; Lujan, Fabian I. (2003). "Avro 691 Lancastrian 1 G-AGLX Indian Ocean". Retrieved 2008-05-14. 
  28. ^ Kebabjian, Richard (1997–2008). "16 Jul 1951". Retrieved 2010-06-30. 

References[edit]

See also[edit]