Post by aircraftclocks on Oct 3, 2020 23:23:10 GMT 12
Day Ending 0800 1 October 1944.
BOUGAINVILLE AND BUKA
Buka and N. Bougainville Targets: The three early morning Gazelle Peninsula sweeps were weathered out and redirected to targets of opportunity in Buka and N. Bougainville. Carrying quarter-tonners, the four planes of Stone 22 scored a confirmed direct hit on the base of a column of blue smoke on a small cape opposite Merok (Matchin Bay), a hit on gardens at Porpore and a hit in front of a cave which demolished the steps leading to it and obliterated the cave mouth. Strafing attacks killed one Nip near Soraken Plantation and burned one hut near Tahitahi. Stone 23 (without bombs) strafed and killed five Nips at Numa Numa, Anewa Bay, Cape Pui Pui and Tamos; and smoked a hut at Cape Tanabom. The third sweep (Stone 24) demolished one hut and wrecked a second at Lonahan; and destroyed three more near Metong. They strafed and killed two Nips in the water. (While making a strafing run, Flying Officer D.I. Blackley (NZ 17, Stone 23) dived into the sea at Orowere Bay. After they had strafed some huts, Blackley's No 2 saw him make a strafing run at 200 feet from shore to sea on an unknown target on the beach at Orowere Bay. Blackley ran into the spray of his own bullets and his prop hit the water. He was then seen to pull up to 50 feet but nosed into the sea 300 yards from shore in deep water. The other three planes of the flight patrolled the area for half an hour. Four more F4Us were scrambled from Torokina and made four sweeps of the entire area without locating anything beyond an oil slick. There had been no sign of A/A or MG fire at any stage of the patrol).
Bougainville Patrols: Five two-plane Bougainville patrols were flown by NZ 22. They strafed a camouflaged dinghy on the beach at Benana Island and left it smouldering; smoked five new huts on the seaward side of Tautsina Island; and strafed Toborei Plantation, gardens on the N. side of Numa Numa and huts all over Buka. The dusk patrol was negative. Dawn patrol was cancelled. The two F4Us on the Able-Charlie search strafed huts at Irue, setting one on fire. One PV made the regular leaflet run except that is was weathered out of Ibu and Sisivie. It strafed the Kieta area.
Gazelle Peninsula Sweep: Only two of the usual five sweeps reached the Gazelle Peninsula. Carrying quarter-tonners, the four F4Us on the Keravat-Malabung-Put Put sweep cratered a road in front of a moving truck in the Kurr? Jong Plantation, and scored a near miss on a group of three vehicles. They strafed and flamed a hut at Keravat farm and smoked a bridge over the Keravat river. The flight on the Duke of York-Cape Lambert sweep flamed one hut near Ragaga Bay and a second in Mandres Plantation; and caused a cloud of brown smoke to rise from drums on a Jetty NE of Mamaar Bay. MG fire was received from a hut in the SW corner of Keravat farm, and inaccurate, tracer MG from a clearing three miles NE of Mamaar Bay.
Rabaul Patrols: The weather at Green permitted only one of five scheduled Rabaul patrols to take off from Green, but this was forced back by weather. One F4U made a water landing 3/4 mile off Green after engine failure. The pilot was rescued. Weather cancelled all other strikes and patrols from Green. The Rabaul weather report-ship count was negative.
Post by aircraftclocks on Oct 4, 2020 22:32:35 GMT 12
Day Ending 0800 3 October 1944.
BOUGAINVILLE AND BUKA (118 sorties—44 1/2 tons dropped)
Numa Numa Bivouac: Weathered out from Waitavalo, 29 SBDs and 34 F4Us found a secondary target in the Nip bivouac area in Numa Numa Plantation. They covered the area thoroughly with 28 tons of bombs. Results were obscured by jungle growth. A good deal of smoke and dust was observed. One flight of SBDs reported seeing flames above the tree-tops at the time of its retirement, and the F4Us of VMO 251 reported starting two columns of black smoke which rose to 700 feet. The four VMF 223 planes attacked huts and the dock; the other flights concentrated on the plantation area. All planes strafed the targets. Moderate, inaccurate MG fire was reported from the SE corner of the plantation. One flight reported an apparent blinker signal from a group of huts between Kuraipaia and Tubutubue.
For the Record:
15 SBDs VMSB 133 0925 load 1x500 dr 15x500 2x250 29x250. 14 SBDs VMSB 236 0843 load 1x500 dr 14x500. 2x250 27x250 6 F4Us VMO 251 0910 load 1x1000 dr 5x1000. 12 F4Us NZ 17 0930 load 1x1000 dr 9x1000. 12 F4Us NZ 22 0930 load 1x1000 dr 12x1000. 4 F4Us VMF 223 0930 load 1x500 dr 4x500.
Shortland-Fauro Area Hit: After six SBDs of VMSB 241 had made an unsuccessful attempt to get through to Fauro, nine Munda-based PBJs attacked targets on and around Shortland Island. Photographs taken after the attack showed fair quantities of white smoke rising from Aliang, Halola and Pawtai Point. Bombs were also dropped on the southern tip of Taukuna Island, and all targets were strafed. Targets in the same area were also attacked by several flights of F4Us, Four F4Us of NZ 17—one with a petrol bomb—destroyed 5-8 huts in a clearing 400 yards inland from the SW coast of Shortland Island between Kafai river and Fosai Bay. The second four planes from the same squadron put all their bombs in a tight cluster among five good huts, including two large ones, in the same vicinity. The same planes killed two Nips at the SW corner of Morgusaia Island, and smoked two huts among several strafed along the west coast of Shortland. Four F4Us of NZ 22 bombed a village of 12 huts at Kariki on the NE coast of Fauro. They destroyed 6-7 huts with three direct hits. A second flight of 4 planes from the same squadron bombed and strafed targets on Fauro and Shortland.
For the Record:
9 PBJs VMB 413 1000 load 4x500 dr 33x500. 8 F4Us NZ 17 1230-1240 load 1x500(7) dr 7x500 1 belly tank incendiary incendiary. (75 gallons) 1 belly tank incendiary. 8 F4Us NZ 22 1320(4) load 1x500 dr 4x500. 1315(4)
South Bougainville Patrols: Five two-plane patrols from VMF 223 and VMF 212 ranged over Bougainville during the day. They strafed huts throughout the area, smoking two at Skotolan. They strafed a 25 ft. barge on a reef in the water E. of Cape L'Averdy and caused it to fill with water. One flight received meagre but accurate MG and 20 mm fire from the Fosai Bay area. One F4U was slightly damaged. The first patrol reported a 30 ft. barge, occupied by 4 or 6 persons, on Lake Lahala. This barge was searched for by a later patrol, unsuccessfully. The dusk patrol, and a Torokina-Wide Bay sweep were negative.
Post by aircraftclocks on Oct 5, 2020 11:28:24 GMT 12
Day Ending 0800 4 October 1944.
NEW BRITAIN (89 sorties - 32 tons)
Waitavalo and Kanakdran: The attack on reported Nip bivouac areas in Waitavalo and Kanakdran Plantations, which has been projected for some days, was accomplished yesterday. Waitavalo was hit by 22 Piva SBDs and 11 Piva F4Us, and Kanakdran by 24 Torokina F4Us. The two flights of SBDs reported good coverage from the E. end of Waitavalo Plantation through the suspected bivouac area to the edge of Tol Plantation. No results of the bombing were observed because of trees. One flight of SBDs reported that they could see no evidence of enmy activity. Moderate, inaccurate MG fire was encountered from the S. tip of Tol Plantation. Results of the F4Us bombing were also unobserved. Six SBDs strafed the area and put 50 rounds into an 80 ft. tower which they located in Tol Plantation. Seventeen half tonners were put into the Karakdran target area, which was then strafed by the F4Us in line abreast. They reported seeing a thin column of blue smoke 400 yds due E. of Kanakdran, and brown and black smoke rising to 200-300 ft. over Waitavalo. The target and the surrounding area, the pilots said, had an appearance of great activity. Many trees had been cut down and the undergrowth cleared. A number of large buildings at the mouth of the river looked like headquarters.
For the Record:
15 SBDs VMSB 133 0955 load 1x500 dr 15x500 2x100 30x100. 7 SBDs VMSB 236 1020 load 1x500 dr 6x500 2x250 13x250. 7 F4Us VMO 251 1025 load 1x1000 dr 7x1000. 4 F4Us VMF 212 1020 load 1x1000 dr 4x1000. 12 F4Us NZ 17 1048-1100 load 1x1000 dr 10x1000. 12 F4Us NZ 22 1025-1035 load 1x1000 dr 10x1000.
BOUGAINVILLE AND BUKA (46 sorties-13 tons)
Shortland Concentrations: Enemy concentrations in the Kulitanai-Korovo-Faisi area (S.E. Shortland Island) were attacked by 16 Torokina F4Us carrying quarter-tonners. Hits were observed on Kulitanai Point and near Korovo. Two fires were seen near Korovo ridge after the strike. Huts and beaches on the S. coast of Shortland were strafed. Meagre (7-8 bursts), inaccurate heavy A/A was encountered from a known position on Poporang ridge. Six bursts of 40 mm were reported from the same position and from Korovo Point (half a mile inland in the center of the land area).
For the Record:
8 F4Us NZ 17 1425-36 load 1x500 dr 8x500. 8 F4Us NZ 22 1427-30 load 1x500 dr 8x500.
SEARCHES FOR 3 OCTOBER
Bougainville Patrols were flown by Piva F4Us, one of these including the Able-Charlie search. The patrols killed two Nips out of 10 strafed near Kara. They strafed huts at Kara, Fauro Island, Numa Numa and Cape L'Averdy, and fired four huts at the mouth of the Kraiaowa river. The dawn and dusk patrols and the Torokina-Rabaul sweep were routine.
Post by aircraftclocks on Oct 6, 2020 0:28:04 GMT 12
Day Ending 0800 5 October 1944.
NEW BRITAIN (106 sorties - 40 1/2 tons)
Ralum Supply Area: The Nip supply area at Ralum was the main target yesterday. Twenty-six Piva SBDs and 35 Torokina and Piva F4Us took off for the target and dropped 25 tons of of bombs. Fourteen SBDs of VMSB 133, which were first over the target, reported as confirmed the destruction of one heavy gun position approximately 175 degrees 1600 yards from the main Ralum pier; and the destruction of a pier and of four huts. They claimed to have destroyed or damaged 3 more huts and one warehouse -like building, all in the Ralum area. The only result observed by the second flight of SBDs (VMSB 236) was a confirmed damaging hit on a possible warehouse. Two pilots reported alternating flashes from one mile NE of the target area; but no bursts or puffs were seen. The first two flights of F4Us (VMF 223 and NZ 22) reported good coverage of the target area with their half-tonners. VMF 223 pilots reported 4 or 5 flashes of inaccurate heavy fire from a known position one mile N of Tobera. NZ 17 were unable to hit the target because of the movement of other aircraft and released on a rubber plantation 700 yards to the south, scoring nine hits in the area. One of their bombs was dropped on three medium A/A guns in a clearing at Cape St. George. One position was reported destroyed, and all three guns ceased firing. No A/A was encountered in the Ralum area except for three white puffs of possible 20 or 40 MM which appeared to orginate at 50 yards inland from the base of Ralum pier. Photographs of the actual target area (Ralum 45), taken after the strike, showed one building destroyed.
Shortland - Fauro Area: Targets on Fauro and in the Shortland Island area were again attacked by Torokina and Munda planes. Concentrating on Faisi, 16 F4Us reported 13 hits with quarter-tonners in the target area. Five flashes of heavy A/A were seen in a known position on Poporang; light muzzle flashes near the S tip of Faisi; and 2 inaccurate tracers at 4000 feet from Ballale. Six Munda SBDs reported a damaging hit on a gun position on the E bank of Sinasora Bay, Fauro Island, and three area hits. Four Munda PBJs dropped 15 quarter-tonners on huts on Taukuna and Farumo Islands and on Harapa, Saenai Point, Kingeriai Point, and Lorau. Bomb hits were observed among huts at Lorau and white smoke near Farumo. A small explosion resulted from strafing at Saenai.
Bougainville Patrols: Six two-plane Bougainville patrols, (including the Able-Charlie search) were flown by VMF 212 and VMO 251. They strafed 11 Nips with unobserved results; smoked a hut at Luluai Point and another at Kieta; and fired two huts at the mouth of the Tauraua river. The dawn and dusk patrols, and the Torokina-Rabaul sweep were negative.
Post by aircraftclocks on Oct 6, 2020 0:53:49 GMT 12
Day Ending 0800 6 October 1944.
BOUGAINVILLE AND BUKA (48 sorties-14 1/2 tons)
Bougainville Patrols: The first of four Bougainville patrols, flown by VMF 223 and VMF 212, strafed a 50 ft barge moored alongside three other barges in Tonolei harbour. The barge gave off heavy black smoke and then burst into flames, burning furiously. Another patrol 3 1/2 hours later reported that the barge was still burning, but that the other barges appeared to be derelicts. A warehouse described as well-filled along the coast of Buka between Lemanmanu Mission and Cape Lemankoa was strafed by two flights of planes with unobserved results. Another flight reported moderate inaccurate MG fire from the inner harbour at Kieta. The Torokina-Rabaul sweep was negative.
Gomai Huts: Huts at Gomai (SW tip of Shortland Island) were attacked by eight Torokina F4Us with two tons of bombs. Five quarter-tonners fell close to two groups each of five huts, damaging an undetermined number. Two move quarter-tonners destroyed two new huts at Komaliai Point. The eighth bomb was dropped on huts at Halola, where the planes also strafed.
For the Record:
8 F4Us NZ 17 1120 load 1x500 dr 8x500 fr 2000'.
Numa Numa Bivouac: The bivouac area at Numa Numa, which was heavily hit on October 2, was attacked again yesterday by eight Torokina F4Us carrying quarter-tonners. The pilots reported five bombs well placed lenghtwise along the target area. A column of gray smoke rising to 300 feet was observed as the planes withdrew. Two strafing runs were made. The flight leader declared that the whole area appeared to be active.
Hahela Mission: A Nips bivouac area at Hahela (S. Buka) was the target for 23 Torokina F4Us. They dropped 21 half-tonners in and near the target area, but results were unobserved. Pilots reported that their appeared to be little activity and that the roadways seemed overgrown.
Post by aircraftclocks on Oct 6, 2020 11:16:43 GMT 12
Day Ending 0800 7 October, 1944.
NEW BRITAIN (110 sorties-49 tons)
Nips at Milim: The Milim area in Wide Bay, to which the Nips have recently returned, overland and by barge, in some strength, was attacked yesterday by 24 Torokina F4Us carrying 12 tons of bombs. The first flight of 4 F4Us reported three hits in a 300-yard triangle enclosing their target area. They observed a column of gray smoke as they retired. Attacking nearly an hour later, eight more F4Us claimed good coverage with 5 hits in an adjacent area. A bomb to the east of the target raised a 500 ft. column of dense black smoke which lasted only about four minutes. The planes made two strafing runs across the target. The other 12 planes hit areas S. of the Kiep Plantation-a reported concentration on the Mu river, and Mu village. Good coverage was reported, and the areas were strafed. The last flight alone reported A/A—white muzzle flashes from a gun position on the coast N. of Mu river mouth.
Bougainville Patrols: The Bougainville patrols, Able-Charlie search and dawn patrol were shared by Piva F4U squadrons. Only five Bougainville patrols were flown, the sixth being cancelled (as was also the dusk patrol) on account of weather. The patrols strafed a total of nine Nips with unobserved results, and probably killed a tenth near Toborei Plantation. The dawn patrol and Torokina-Rabaul sweep were negative.
Post by aircraftclocks on Oct 7, 2020 0:35:22 GMT 12
Day Ending 0800 8 October, 1944.
NEW IRELAND (100 sorties-46 tons)
BOUGAINVILLE AND BUKA (73 sorties-27 1/2 tons)
Shortland Area Again Hit: Weathered out from Wide Bay, Torokina F4Us again attacked the SE Shortland area—Kulitanai, Falsi and Poporang. The first flight of 12 F4Us dropped four bombs on the N. ridge on Poporang Island (all were reported as falling within 250-300 yds. of known A/A positions), and the others on Korovo Peninsula, Morgusiai Island and the W. coast of Poporang. Seven to eight accurate black bursts from the Poporang guns were seen at 4000 ft, and one plane received superficial damage. Tracers were seen from among coconut trees in the middle of Falsi Island. The second flight hit the S. tip of Falsi and Kulitanai. A fire was started half way down the Kulitanai Peninsula. Moderate, inaccurate fire was received from auto and heavy known positions on Poporang and Kulitanai. Black puffs and tracer were seen at 3500-5000 feet. At 0755 on bearing 290 degrees 90 nautical miles from base the flight leader saw a spout of water rising to 300-400 feet. An oil slick was seen after the spout subsided.
For the Record:
12 F4Us NZ 17 0855-0900 load 1x1000 dr 11x1000 fr 4000'. 12 F4Us NZ 22 0902-0906 load 1x1000 dr 11x1000 fr 2500'. One plane damaged.
Hahela and Chabai: Buildings at Hahela. (S. Buka) were hit by 16 Torokina F4Us, and the 14 SBDs which could not reach Kanakdran concentrated on the Chabai area (N. Bougainville). The first flight of F4Us over Hahela reported all bombs in the target area, but no observed results. The second flight claimed 6 area hits and saw four or five huts collapse after the second bomb. The whole area was covered with smoke as they retired. The SBDs put the majority of their bombs on gardens and clearings within a one mile radius of Chabai. All results were unobserved
Bougainville Patrols: Four patrols of Bougainville were carried out, and, in addition, two of the Gazelle Peninsula sweeps, weathered out, hit targets in Bougainville and Buka. The first three Bougainville patrols were uneventful; the fourth (1150-1400) encountered 6 to 10 short, inaccurate bursts from on MG south of Koromira Mission. Of the two flights redirected from New Britain, one dropped its bombs on huts at Cape Hatsia, with unobserved results, and encountered MG fire, accurate at 1000 feet for 10 seconds, from Erventa and Popotala Islands. The other flight destroyed one hut of a group of 8 to 10 at Butchkombo, south of Tinputs, and scored a hit on possible caves along a creek bank S of Tinputs. The dawn patrol and the Torokina-Rabaul sweep were negative. The dusk patrol and two of the Bougainville patrols were cancelled on account of weather. The FMAW TBFs dropped their bombs on Mobina bridge and its approaches. The road approaches were hit.
Post by aircraftclocks on Oct 7, 2020 11:08:02 GMT 12
Day Ending 0800 9 October 1944.
NEW IRELAND (69 sorties-33 tons)
BOUGAINVILLE AND BUKA (82 sorties-32 1/2 tons)
Numa Numa Bivouac: Twenty tons of bombs were dropped on reported Nip bivouac area and island headquarters at Numa Numa by 40 Torokina F4Us. Good coverage of the target was reported, though results were obscured by jungle. Bombs were dropped in the bivouac area itself, and near suspected headquarters and officers' sleeping quarters. The whole area was thoroughly strafed. MG flashes were reported from the west edge of the plantation.
Post by aircraftclocks on Oct 7, 2020 23:47:32 GMT 12
Day Ending 0800 10 October 1944.
NEW BRITAIN (67 sorties - 24 tons)
BOUGAINVILLE AND BUKA (59 sorties - 19 tons)
Numa Numa Bivouac: Twenty Torokina F4Us returned to the Numa Numa bivouac area and dropped another 10 tons on the target. Results were again unobserved because of jungle, but a large column of blue smoke was seen rising to 500 feet as the first strike of 12 planes left the target. Good coverage was reported. Photos taken after the strike showed the majority of bomb craters on the E side of the plantation area.
Chabai Supply Dump: The Chabai supply dump was bombed and strafed by 8 Torokina F4Us, which concentrated on the SW end of the target. Results were unobserved.
For the Record:
8 F4Us NZ 22 1045-50 load 1x1000 dr. 8x1000
Attack on Poporang: Weathered out from Milim Bay; 11 Torokina F4Us returned to the Poporang area with thousand pounders. They dropped 9 bombs over the target from 5000 feet. Three fell in a tight group destroying two buildings on Poporang ridge. A fourth fell on Korovo ridge, with unobserved results. Five to six bursts of inaccurate medium A/A were encountered at 4000-5000 feet from an undetermined position in the Poporang area.
For the Record:
11 F4Us NZ 17 ??05-0908 load 1x1000 dr. 9x1000
Bougainville Patrols: VMO 251 flew four Bougainville patrols as well as the dawn and dusk patrols (both of which were routine). The 8 F4Us on Bougainville patrols strafed huts, gardens and reported concentration areas at Kaino, Kupei, Arawa Bay, Rorovana, Kahili, Koromira and Bonamu, where one hut was fired. They strafed a reported Nip observation post, consisting of a small lean-to with thatched roof, just below the crest of a hill west of Koromira mission. The Torokina - Wide Bay sweep was negative. Weathered out from Gazelle peninsula, three Piva F4Us dropped quarter-tonners on huts at Lemanmanu, on the NW tip of Buka.
For the Record:
8 F4Us VMO 251 0632-1014 Bougainville patrols. Strafing. 8 F4Us VMO 251 0602-0704(4) Dawn and Dusk patrols. 1739-1804(4) 1 PV NZ 3 0645-1030 Torokina - Wide Bay sweep. 3 F4Us Piva 1510-1545 load 1x500 dr. 3x500
Post by aircraftclocks on Oct 8, 2020 0:39:23 GMT 12
Day Ending 0800 11 October 1944.
NEW BRITAIN (189 sorties-85 tons*)
*Includes 19 sorties, 9 tons from 10/9/44.
Ralum Supply Area: The Nip supply area at Ralum, last attacked on October 4, was the main target yesterday. It was hit by 29 SBDs and 36 F4Us with a total of 31 tons of bombs. Photos taken after the strike showed 13 buildings destroyed, one building burning, another small fire, and the wooded area of the target well hit with bombs. The first flight of SBDs over the target (VMSB 236) reported effective bombing of the building area starting five fires with smoke rising to 300-500 feet. One large building was seen partially destroyed. The second flight (VMSB 133) claimed 5 huts possibly destroyed in the target area. The three flights of F4Us also reported good coverage and said the area was left a mass of flame and smoke. The majority of planes strafed the target. A/A was encountered as follows:
(1) Five bursts of heavy at 7000 feet from Tobera. (2) Meagre, inaccurate MG from the shore end of Ralum pier. (3) Intense, inaccurate MG from 270 degrees 200 yds from the row of huts in Ralum 45. (4) Intense, accurate MG to heavy fire at 3000-12000 ft from 225 degrees, 3000 yds from the pier. (5) Moderate, accurate medium and heavy from Kenabot and Raniola Plantations. (6) Fifteen to 20 puffs at 4000-6000 ft. possibly from known position Vunapope.
Two bombs which had hung up over Ralum were dropped on huts on Duke of York. One hut was possibly destroyed.
For the Record:
15 SBDs VMSB 236 0900 load 1x500 dr 13x500 2x250 28x250 14 SBDs VMSB 133 0903 load 1x500 dr 14x500. 2x250 28x250 12 F4Us VMF 223 0907 load 1x1000 dr 10x1000. 12 F4Us NZ 17 0928 load 1x1000 dr 12x1000. 12 F4Us NZ 22 0930 load 1x1000 dr 12x1000.
BOUGAINVILLE AND BUKA (37 sorties-9 tons)
Bougainville Patrols: Five two-plane Bougainville patrols, in addition to the regular dawn and dusk patrols and including the Able-Charlie search, were flown by VMF 212. One of the patrols carried quarter-tonners which were dropped, unsuccessfully, on huts at Monoitu Mission. In strafing attacks the 10 F4Us set one hut afire at Lemanmenu, set afire and destroyed at least two huts north of Kara strip, killed some of 20 Nip troops caught in a garden at Maigi and killed or wounded some of 10-15 Nips at the mouth of the Puriata river. The last patrol was turned back by a front covering the entire S. of the Island. The dawn and dusk and dusk patrols, and the Torokina-Rabaul sweep were negative.
Post by aircraftclocks on Oct 8, 2020 0:56:53 GMT 12
Day Ending 0800 12 October 1944.
BOUGAINVILLE AND BUKA (67 sorties-17 tons)
Numa Numa Supply And Bivouac Area: With eight quarter-ton Napalm incendiaries and 16 half-tonners 24 Torokina F4Us returned yesterday to the Numa Numa supply and bivouac area. They reported good coverage, but results were again unobserved except for two columns of smoke and fires which continued burning for some time after each strike. The area was thoroughly strafed.
Miscellaneous Targets: Miscellaneous targets in Bougainville and Buka were bombed by 16 Torokina F4Us. The planes destroyed one hut and damaged two at Tandeki; destroyed one hut at Cape Putputun; scored a direct hit with a 500 lb. Napalm incendiary on the centre hut of a row of eight huts at Lemanmanu, causing blue-gray smoke to rise to 1000 feet; dropped seven quarter-tonners on Kaino village with unobserved results; and possibly damaged huts at Gohi.
Post by aircraftclocks on Oct 8, 2020 1:22:52 GMT 12
Day Ending 0800 13 October, 1944.
BOUGAINVILLE (94 sorties-28 tons)
Maliai and Poporang: Maliai, at the eastern end of Morgusiai Island, was the target for 27 SBDs and 6 F4Us from Piva, while 24 Torokina F4Us returned to Poporang ridge. The first flight of SBDs to hit Maliai village (VMSB 133) reported the destruction of two huts and the possible destruction of two more. All bombs dropped appeared to hit the village area, and fires and dark smoke were seen as the planes retired. The second flight (VMSB 236) scored confirmed damaging hits on two houses, and good coverage of the south part of the village. Two gunners reported possible light A/A from a position north of Maliai. The SBDs were followed on to the target by 6 F4Us of VMF 212 which dropped 5 half-tonners (three of these overshooting into the water) and strafed the area with 2400 rounds of .50 cal. Two flights each of 12 F4Us (NZ 17 and NZ 22) dropped 20 half-tonners and 4 Napalm quarter-tonners on buildings and gun postions at Poporang. One half-tonner was a direct hit or very near miss on a close group of two or three buildings, and debris was seen in the air. A hut was demolished, and a number of bombs landed close to gun positions. Coverage by both flights was reported good. Moderate, inaccurate fire was received from known medium and heavy positions on Poporang, and from a heavy gun on Kulitanai Point. The first flight reported about 11 bursts of heavy calibre at from 2000 to 4000 feet, and this fire was maintained as the second flight came in on the target. Photographs taken during the Maliai strike showed 4 near misses on one large hut at the N. end of Maliai. The hut was still standing but was possibly damaged. Photographs taken after the strike at Poporang showed one hut demolished but no near hits were to be seen on A/A positions.
Kaino and Mission Point Guns: Kaino village was attacked by 8 Torokina F4Us carrying quarter-ton Napalm incendiaries. No results were observed other than smoke. Another flight of 8 F4Us was weathered out of Kupei village and hit a small village west of Arawa Plantation. Their bombs - Napalm incendiaries - overshot the target by about 20 yards. A TBF and a TBM, both from FMAW, missed the gun positions reported at Mission Point but damaged a camouflaged house 100 yards north of the guns. They strafed around Chinatown (where they received meagre, inaccurate MG fire), and also dropped 10,000 leaflets. Their sightings included what may be a new volcanic fissure in the Mount Taroka range in the centre of southern Bougainville. One of the pilots reported seeing a fissure in the mountainside, with high clouds of steam rising from a nearby stream as though lava was flowing into it. In a later attack, another TBF destroyed the apparent twin mount 40 mm gun at Mission Point by a direct hit with a quarter-tonner. A number of sightings were made, at low altitude, of other probable gun positions near Cape Friendship and Moila Point.
For the Record:
NZ 17(8) 1110 16 F4Us NZ 22(8) 1120 load 1x500(incend.) dr 16x500. 2 TBF(M) FMAW 0925-1135 load 4x250 dr 4x250 8x100 9x100. 1 TBF FMAW 1415-1515 load 4x500 dr 2x500.
Post by aircraftclocks on Oct 9, 2020 1:45:16 GMT 12
Day Ending 0800 15 October 1944.
NEW IRELAND (42 sorties - 17 1/2 tons)
BOUGAINVILLE AND BUKA (39 sorties-11 tons)
Good Coverage of Uguimo: The Uguimo supply area, SW of Kahili, where there have been signs of recent activity by the Nips, was attacked by 12 Torokina F4Us with 6 tons of bombs. The planes reported one direct hit on the transport area and seven direct hits on the target with good coverage. One plane observed an inaccurate black puff at 7000 feet. Two trails of smoke, similar to the trails left by burned-out pyrotechnics, were reported from the Kahili Maru area. The target, pilots said, appeared inactive. A thick haze prevented damage assessment by photographs, but a number of huts were shown destroyed.
Attack on Kupei: A reported revival of Nip activity at Kupei, south of Arawa Bay, where enemy troops were formerly concentrated, took 7 Torokina F4Us to this target yesterday morning. They carried quarter ton indendiaries. Pilots found the target difficult to bomb because of high hills on all sides and reported poor coverage. One bombs was a direct hit on the target area, and six hits were scored around the perimeter. The last pilot over the target saw several huts which appeared to be scorched but were not burning, possibly because of the dampness.
Post by aircraftclocks on Oct 9, 2020 10:34:46 GMT 12
Day Ending 0600 16 October 1944.
NEW BRITAIN (155 sorties-71 tons)
Ralum Supply Area: A group of buildings, estimated at 40, west of Ralum, was the target for 12 F4Us of NZ 22 carrying eight thousand-pounders and four quarter-ton incendiaries. The planes reported good coverage and grouping. During the attack a large explosion took place in the centre of the target, debris was hurled in all directions and a large column of greyish-black smoke rose to 500 feet. Two black puffs of A/A were observed at 6000 feet off Ralum. The last aircraft on the target reported 2 black puffs below it while it was in a dive at 3000-4000 feet. Photos taken at 1051-56 did not show any damage in the specified Ralum target area.
Rigu Buildings: Huts and buildings S. of Kieta harbour, in the Rigu area, were bombed by 8 F4Us of NZ 22. Dropping quarter-ton incendiaries, the F4Us possibly damaged one group of 6-7 huts, raising a column of grayish smoke to 500'; and completely demolished another group of five huts.
For the Record:
8 F4Us NZ 22 1135 load 1x500 (incend.) dr 8x500.
Bougainville Patrols: Five two-plane Bougainville patrols, incorporating the Able-Charlie search, were flown by VMO 251. The first patrol strafed three Nips in a canoe in Tonolei harbour, killing the Nips and sinking the canoe. They also strafed a small boat on the NW shore of the harbour, and many camouflaged nets covering boxes along the shore. Later patrols strafed huts in the Kieta area, at Numa Numa, and north of Kahili. A barge hideout was reported under overhanging trees at the mouth of a river flowing into Lake Lahala. The dawn and dusk patrols were uneventful. The PV on the Torokina-Rabaul sweep reported 4 puffs of fairly accurate medium A/A bursting at 5000' from Tobera.
Beefsteak searches were negative with full track and cover. The weather was reported excellent, ceiling and visibility unlimited, with a few scattered squalls. This is the final VPB-148 Baker 31 search report since RNZAF takes over on 16 October.