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Title:HURRICANE GROUND ATTACK OPERATIONS FROM ONBAUK AIRSTRIP, ON THE RIVER IRRAWADDY, BURMA [Allocated Title]
Film Number:ABY 78
Other titles:ROYAL AIR FORCE OPERATIONS IN SOUTH EAST ASIA DURING THE SECOND WORLD WAR [Allocated Series Title]
Summary: Hawker 'Hurribomber' aircraft are rearmed at Onbauk forward airstrip on the River Irrawaddy before attacking nearby Japanese targets.
Description: An RAF armourer rolls a 250-lb bomb towards a parked Hawker Hurricane fighter-bomber. A second armourer reloads the aircraft's machine gun magazines with 0.303-inch ammunition, while another adjusts a bomb's fusing impellor. Seated pilots study maps of the target area before getting up from the briefing table. The pilot of Hurricane Mk IV AW:H LD161 (RAF 42 Squadron) boarding his aircraft. The aircraft kicks up dust as it taxis from dispersal. An RAF Regiment gunner manning a 20mm Hispano cannon as Hurricanes taxi past, including AW:B and AW:G. A Hurricane makes a low 'beat up' pass before climbing sharply. A second low pass. RAF ground crew climb the earth embankment around the airfield's bomb dump to watch the Hurricanes make their attacks. Close-up of the men climbing the bank. Close-up of men pointing, many of them stripped to the waist. Hurricanes overhead. Bombs can be seen dropping from the aircraft and impacting the ground. Drifting smoke. Men watching. Aerial footage shows a Hurricane attacking a jungle target with gunfire and bombs. Cartridge casings and gunsmoke can be seen coming from the aircraft before the bombs fall away. Five Hurricanes pass low overhead in line abreast. Repeated footage of pilot boarding AW:H. AW:R and AW:B taxiing past camera. Ground crew climbing embankment. Armourers bombing-up a Hurricane. A bomb is marked 'EL 893'.
Production Details: Air Ministry, Directorate of Public Relations (Production sponsor)
Royal Air Force Film Production Unit (Production company)
Personalities, Units and Organisations: Royal Air Force, 42 Squadron (regiment/service)
Keywords: Onbauk, Burma (geography)
Fighter operations, Air operations over Burma, Burma 1942-1945, Second World War (event)
Royal Air Force 1939-1945 (theme)
Far East 1939-1945 (theme)
Burma 1942-1945 (theme)
Aerial Warfare (theme)
Technical Details: Format: 35mm
Number of items/reels/tapes: 1
Footage: 424 ft; Running time: 5 minutes
Notes: Much of this footage is reused from earlier shoots. See references below.
Dopesheet emphasises the close proximity of this airfield to the front line. The dopesheet remarks '[...]The strip is well within range of these heavy [Japanese] guns apart from which they have Jap patrols filtering through to the strip at night throwing hand grenades at the aircraft and personnel'.
ABY 51 (GROUND ATTACK, AIR SUPPLY AND LEAFLET OPERATIONS BY HAWKER HURRICANES OF RAF 42 SQUADRON OVER BURMA [Allocated Title])
ABY 50 (FIREPOWER DEMONSTRATION NEAR IMPHAL [Allocated Title])
ABY 52 (RAF CLOSE AIR SUPPORT DEMONSTRATION NEAR BISHENPUR, MANIPUR, INDIA [Allocated Title])
ABY 18 (RAF HAWKER HURRICANE OPERATIONS ON THE IMPHAL FRONT, INDIA [Allocated Title])
CF 263 (ROYAL AIR FORCE OPERATIONS IN THE FAR EAST, 1941-1945.)