Attacking heights varied between 7000 feet and 16000 feet, depending on the target, but were mostly in the 8000 feet to 10000 feet range.
Starting out in February with twelve aircraft in three boxes of four in trail formation, culminating on the 27th with a full squadron formation in a single box of twelve. Despite the comparative success of this tactic, it was never tried again, and in March and April, most of the missions were flown in either two boxes of six aircraft, or in a single box of six. In mid-April, as a complete departure, fourteen aircraft flew to the target area in two boxes, and then went into line astern for single aircraft attacks on targets of opportunity along of 15-20 mile segment of the main rail line between NOVA GRADISKA and BATRJNA.
Lack of success in this mode led to the experiment not being repeated. Although the idea of low level attacks was mooted briefly, and some practice sorties were flown, authority to try the concept in Yugoslavia was never forthcoming. Two factors against it were certainly, the unsuitability of the T1 bombsight for low level, and the fact that the Squadron's forward firing package guns had been removed soon after the aircraft had arrived at BIFERNO. The latter, would have seriously affected our ability to keep the heads of ground defenses down during a low level attack. Certainly, against light to medium defended targets, our Marauders with 4x.50' s firing forward, bomb bays filled with delayed action bombs, plus, after they were dropped, the gunners with their 6 x. 50's blasting as the aircraft pulled away, would have proved a formidable attacking weapon indeed.
Alas, it was never to be, and we always regretted not having the chance of attacking at zero level.
NOTE: Some of the targets in Yugoslavia were tailor-made to finally prove the worth of the B-26 at low Level. ~ 2L
View Site Map