CRASH OF A KITTYHAWK
OFF EAST COAST OF CAPE YORK
NEAR PRINCESS CHARLOTTE BAY
ON 11 SEPTEMBER 1942
On 11 September 1942, 2nd Lieutenant Robert G. "Bob" Hazard of the 7th Fighter Squadron of the 49th Fighter Group, USAAF, was on a ferry flight from Cairns in Kittyhawk P-40E, #41-24874 with other aircraft of the 7th Fighter Squadron headed for Horn Island and eventually New Guinea. Lt Hazard's engine failed and his plane fell back from the formation and began losing altitude. At about 100 feet it made a steep dive into Princess Charlotte Bay.
Members of his flight saw his aircraft strike the water. The rest of the flight searched for Lt. Hazard but he was not found. A search of the coastline of Princess Charlotte Bay found no trace of Lt. Hazard.
The aircraft was condemned and written off.
The unfortunate Lt. Bob Hazard had earlier been involved in a tragic accident at Batchelor airfield on 29 April 1942. While practising dual takeoff's with another Kittyhawk, his tyre blew and he careered off the runaway into a group of top brass that had just alighted from a C-40 killing 3 persons including General Hal George, General MacArthur's Air Force Co-ordinator.
Hazard's combat career came to an end after this tragic accident due to his broken spirit. He was deemed only fit for limited flight duties and he then became a ferry pilot.
The American Battle Monuments Commission home page shows the following information for a Robert G. Hazard:-
Robert G. Hazard
First Lieutenant, U.S. Army Air Forces
7th Fighter Squadron, 49th Fighter Group
Entered the Service from: California
Died: September 12, 1942
Missing in Action or Buried at Sea
Tablets of the Missing at Manila American Cemetery
NOTE:- The MACR records for this crash show two dates for this crash. The 11th September and the 12th September 1942.
Has this wreck been found yet?
"Protect & Avenge"
"The 49th Fighter Group in World War II"
By S.W. Ferguson & William K. Pascalis
A Schiffer Military History Book
I'd like to thank Gordon Birkett for his assistance with this home page.
Can anyone help me with more information on this crash?
© Peter Dunn 2015
This page first produced 16 July 2000
This page last updated 10 September 2018