UNEXPLODED ORDNANCE
IN THE BUNYAVILLE STATE FOREST, BRISBANE

 

There is an unsubstantiated "story" that an aircraft, possibly a B-25 Mitchell bomber, crashed near the Jinker Track in the Bunyaville State Forest area, at Pine Rivers in Brisbane, possibly during WW2. Whilst there is a depression in the ground, and some remnants of Japanese and American ammunition it is unlikely this was the site of an aircraft crash.

Most of the ammunition at the site has now been recovered by various people over the years. There is a huge bomb crater in a creek with a wooden/earthen bunker type structure about 60 metres away on some high ground overlooking the crater.

The area was established by the Army either during the war to detonate unwanted ordnance in a controlled fashion. The military bunker at Bunyaville was established with the permission of the Forestry Sub-Department in August 1943 under Regulation 54 of National Security (General) Regulations, as part of an area which was designated as a bomb cemetery and experimental explosive testing ground. The bomb cemetery remained in use until July 1945 and was used by both Australian and American forces.

American munitions disposal activities in the forest caused a bushfire in late October 1944 when hot bomb fragments ignited the undergrowth. In July 1945 the Australian Military Forces notified the Forestry Sub-Department that they no longer required the bunker and that Forestry could regain possession of the site.'

 

A few trees with cut of tops
The large crater now overgrown with grass
My visit to the timber and earth bunker overlooking the crater on 4 March 2001
The timber and earth bunker
Entrance to the timber bunker
Timber and earth Bunker
Timber and earth bunker
Bomb casing shrapnel
Aluminium cylinder about 12 inches long with nut and threaded plug which were originally stuck inside the crushed end of the cylinder - Can anyone identify what this is?
Closeup of the nut
Closeup of the threaded plug
Groove in the aluminium cylinder
Part of a cooling fin from a radial engine perhaps?
Other side of the above item
L - R:- A piece of bomb casing shrapnel, and 2 pieces of aluminium
Some Japanese ordnance found at the site
A live 25 lbs smoke shell, a 25 lbs detonator cap and a 2lb anti-tank practice projectile found in the creek bed during a visit to site on 4 March 2001. The Army were advised and the 25lb shell was taken away by the Army on 5 March 2001 for detonation in case there was any residue left inside.

NOTE:- Channel 7 contacted me on 14 March 2018 to say that a fellow had found an unexploded round near the Jinker Track in Bunyaville State Forest. He had apparently taken it to the local Police Station which was then placed in immediate lockdown. If you find any UXO, please leave it in situ, and notify the Police who will notify the relevant person in the Australian Army to dispose of it.

 

ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

I'd like to thank Mark Walker for his assistance with information on this possible crash.

 

Can anyone help me with more information?

 

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 Peter Dunn 2015

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This page first produced 2 March 2001

This page last updated 18 January 2020