Thursday, March 23, 2023

Dornier DO-24 T in Pollença

In 2021, Puerto Pollença in Mallorca commemorated the 50th anniversary of the last flight of the Dornier DO-24 T in Spain, which departed from the Pollença military base on August 3, 1969, heading to Germany where it landed three days later. In command of the last flight of the mythical seaplane was Commander Luis Mesón Bada (died in 2015) and as second in command, Captain José Luis Ferragut.

At the northern end of the island of Mallorca is the bay of Pollensa. Oriented to the east and flanked by the Formentor and Pinar capes that frame its mouth to the north and south, respectively, it is about 5 km wide, being just over 10 km. those that separate the beach of La Gola, at the bottom of the cove, from the mouth. Protected from the storms of the north by the Cavall Bernat mountain range and by the heights that in extension of it constitute the backbone of Cape Formentor, it was from time immemorial a place of refuge and shelter for navigators -Phoenicians, Carthaginians, Romans and Berbers- that protected with fortifications and watchtowers, of which some remains are still preserved, this splendid place so strategically centered on all the routes of the western Mediterranean. Later on, at La Avanzada point, on the ruins of a medieval fort probably built on top of those of older military constructions, a beautiful fortress with a hexagonal plan was built that remained armed and garrisoned until it was demilitarized in 1875.

The Dornier Do 24 is a 1930s German three-engine flying boat designed by the Dornier Flugzeugwerke for maritime patrol and search and rescue. A total of 279 were built among several factories from 1937 to 1945. The Dornier Do 24 was designed to meet a Royal Netherlands Navy requirement for a replacement of the Dornier Wals being used in the Dutch East Indies, with the Netherlands government signing a contract for six Dornier Do 24s on 3 August 1936. Two more prototypes were built for the German navy to be evaluated against the Blohm & Voss BV 138.

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