Accident BA Swallow 2 VR-SAL, Monday 31 January 1938
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Date:Monday 31 January 1938
Time:18:30 LT
Type:BA Swallow 2
Owner/operator:Eric Newbold, OBE
Registration: VR-SAL
MSN: 420
Fatalities:Fatalities: 1 / Occupants: 1
Other fatalities:3
Aircraft damage: Destroyed
Location:The Esplanade, Penang, Straits Settlement -   Malaysia
Phase: Manoeuvring (airshow, firefighting, ag.ops.)
Departure airport:Penang, Straits Settlement, Malaysia
Destination airport:
Confidence Rating: Information is only available from news, social media or unofficial sources
c/no. 420: First registered [C of R 12] 11.11.35 as VR-SAL to Eric Newbold, Eastern Smelting Co, Penang, Straits Settlement, Malaysia. Also used by the Penang Flying Club, of which Eric Newbold was president

Written off (damaged beyond repair) 31.1.38 when crashed into the sea after hitting a car, a signpost, and spectators while low-flying over the Esplanade, Penang. The two occupants of the car and one spectator were killed:

Soo Hoo Kok Yean (spectator, died)
Foo Chiang Choong (car driver, died)
Koo Keng Hoo (car passenger, died)

Eric Newbold OBE, the pilot of VR-SAL, survived the crash unhurt.(He was rescued by the Royal Navy vessel HMS Stork) and taken to hospital to check over his injuries. However, after being discharged from Hospital, he died later the same day (31.1.38) at Eastern Smelting Works, Penang after committing suicide by cyanide poisoning. He was 44 years old and was buried with full military honours (see link #7)


5. Malaya Tribune, 1 February 1938, Page 12:
6. The Straits Times, 27 February 1938, Page 4 (Inquest into the suicide of Eric Newbold):
7. The Singapore Free Press and Mercantile Advertiser, 2 February 1938 Page 7 (Report of the Funeral of Eric Newbold):

Revision history:

24-Jan-2018 18:31 Dr. John Smith Added
16-Feb-2019 20:27 Dr. John Smith Updated [Time, Source, Narrative]

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