Stung by the Aussies

Here is an image of the quaterdeck of HMNZS BELLONA after it was struck by a dummy rocket.  Published with permission of JE Nolan

On 29 January 1951, Sydney was part of an eighteen-ship fleet present in Sydney Harbour to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Australia’s Federation. Following this, the carrier joined a multinational training exercise in south-east Australian waters, then visited Hobart for the Royal Hobart Regatta. During the exercise, a Sea Fury accidentally fired four practice rockets into the superstructure of the New Zealand flagship, HMNZS Bellona: although an inquiry concluded that the pilot had unintentionally pressed the fire button, it was later found that certain signal frequencies transmitted by Sydneys radio aerials could trigger a Fury’s firing circuits. 

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1 Response to Stung by the Aussies

  1. Peter Broom says:

    I was on the flag deck of Bellona when this happened and after several signals back and forth it transpired that the pilot was a Kiwi

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