FOR WANT of a nail the Kingdom was lost. More recently, it could well be that for want of a topographical chart a DC-10 was lost. The conclusion of the chief inspector of air accidents, Mr Ron Chippindale, as to the probable cause of the crash of NZP pointed to pilot error in deciding to "continue the flight at low level towards an area of poor surface and horizon definition when the crew were not certain of their position" and "subsequent inability to detect the rising terrain which intercepted the aircraft's flight path."
On August 16th, thirty one years after Aircraft Service (NZ) Ltd joined the pioneers of aerial topdressing, a reunion is being held at the Museum of Transport and Technology in Auckland for ex-members of the company and its associate, Auckland Aviation Services Ltd.
In the accompanying article WINGS associate editor Janic Geelen traces the history of the company — a company that eventually changed its name to NZ Aerospace Industries Ltd.
The advent of the helicopter greatly lessened the problems Involved in ferrying goods and stores between ship and hostile shore. A role previously labouriously involving many hand and awkward cargoes. The helicopter changed all that, bringing speed and convenience to the operation. However, very occasionally, the sea can claim the contents of the sling following a mishap and, very infrequently, the helicopter itself. In the accompanying article Warren Russell, lighthouse keeper on Dog Island in Fouveaux Strait and an aviation historian of note, records the ditching and subsequent recovery of Hughes 500C ZK-HMU following such a ship to shore operation last April.
The accompanying side views, drawn by WINGS artist Rex Crawford, are intended to assist P40 buffs and modellors to distinguish between the five variants of the 297 P40s operated by the RNZAF between 1942-1945.
In this article aviation historian David Duxbury surveys the use of the Corsair with the RNZAF and features photographs from RNZAF and private collections, many hitherto unpublished, to illustrate the service and fates of some of the 424 brought on charge by the RNZAF. Only two F4U-1Ds remain extant — NZ5648 exported to the US in 1971 after restoration to display standard, and NZ5612 under restoration at Ardmore by the Museum of Transport and Technology.