Windsor Locks, CT. – July 16, 1942

Windsor Locks, CT. – July 16, 1942

Bradley Airfield   

P-38 Lightning
U.S. Air Force photo

     On the morning of July 16, 1943, two P-38 Lightning fighter planes were taking off for a training flight at Bradley Field in Windsor Locks.  One of the aircraft, (Ser. No. 42-12588), was piloted by 2nd Lt. Albert R. Dawson, and his aircraft was positioned to the right and just behind  the flight leader’s P-38.  As the two planes sped down the runway, a fuel truck with two privates aboard drove onto the runway from a right side taxiway without authorization from the tower.   The passenger private saw what was happening and warned the driver to turn off.  As the fuel truck driver tried to turn away the other private jumped clear.  A moment later Dawson’s P-38 hit the fuel truck causing and a massive explosion followed.  The force of the impact due to the speed of the aircraft pushed the entangled wreckage for 200 feet. 

      The fuel truck driver was killed in the crash.  The private who jumped suffered minor injuries. Lt. Dawson died of his injuries on July 17, 1942.       


     Book, “Fatal Army Air Forces Aviation Accidents In The United States, 1941 – 1945”, by Anthony J. Mireles, C. 2006.

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