Damage to aircraft

How much damage could any of the bombers take? Here are some examples of RAF and USAAF bombers and the type of damage they took.

For any photo click on it to see a full size version

External view of the damage caused to a Halifax. This craft was attacked twice in 3 minutes. The first attack of the enemy and its incendaries caused a fire that set fire to two ammunition boxes causing most of the rounds to detonate. It does not say what caused most of the damage the ammo on fire or the Ju88's.


Internal view of the same.


 The rear turret of this Lanc was knocked off by a bomb from a higher Lanc.

These holes were made by 20mm shells from a german night fighter on the attack to Peenemunde on 17/18 Aug 43. This attack damaged the starboard outer engine and undercarriage. The turret hydraulics were shot out.


 Another hole caused by a friendly bomb, which did not go off when it hit this Lanc.

This Halifax was damaged by a mid-air collision with another Halifax.


 The angle of penetration from the rounds of a night fighter's shells are indicated by the stell rods. The attack on this Lanc BIII of 100 sqn occured on a raid over Stuttgart on 15/16 March 1944.

The hole in this Halifax was caused by a bomb dropped from another bomber at a higher altitude.



 Flak damage to this Lanc BIII was caused on a raid over Dusseldorf on 2/3 Nov 1944. The starboard aileron was also hit and made it immovable.

Attack on a Halifax by a german night fighter. No date or type of enemy fighter was mentioned.


 This damage was caused by an attack from an ME110 and an FW190 on a raid to Dusseldorf 3/4 Nov 43

A direct hit from enemy flak at Duisburg on 8/9 Apr 43 caused the damage to this Wellington of 428 RCAF sqn. I put it in to show that the Wimpy could fly without it's cloth skin and tail turret!


 This Lanc BIII returned from a raid on Mannheim on 23/24 Sept 43. The crew reported a direct hit by scarecrow that took off the starboard fin, rudder and elevator. The port rudder, and elevator tirmmers were non-serviceable.

This Stirling took it from 20mm and 7.92mm fire from a night fighter.


 This Lanc BIII was shot up by at least six BF109's over Berlin on 23/24 Aug 43. The port-outter engine was stopped but couldn't feather, oil pipes to the mid-upper turret were shot away. The port wing opened up to the main spar, holing one petrol tank, flaps jammed.

Damage to this Wellington was caused by night fighters on 9/10 Apr 41.


 Flak caused this hole and damaged the fuel tanks as well. This Lanc BI was damaged on a raid to Bohlen on 5/6 Mar 45.

The damage to this B17 was caused by an 88mm rount that exploded inside the plane near the radio room. The ball turret was blown off the craft.


 Flak over Fortmund on 22/23 May 44 tore a huge chunck off the starboard fin and rudder.

The damage to this B17 was caused by 5.5 cm R4M rocket projectile from an Me262.


 This Lanc BIII was attacked by an ME410 over the Baltic on 9/10 Apr 44. The turret was made unserviceable, port outter engine was stopped and hydraulic oil was on fire.

A direct hit by an 88mm shell blasted the top off this B24, killing the two waist gunners. It appears the main force of the flak shell explosion is upwards.


 Flak damage caused over Duisburg on 8 Dec 44. The bomb doors,fuselage mid-section, port wing and fin, and the H2S was also hit.

This B24 was attacked by an FW190 on 5 Nov 1943. Seven crew were wounded and the No.4 engine was disabled.


 Flak damage caused over Harpenerweg on 24 Mar 45.

The damage to this B24 was believed to have been caused by 20mm ground fire on the raid to Ploesti.

 A Lanc with engine ablaze.

 Fighter caused the damage to this Lanc BI on the night of 28/29 Jul 44 over Stuttgart

 Damage caused by an enemy fighter over Stettin Bay on 8/9 Feb 45.

 A direct burst by flak set fire to the rear turret oil reservoir, spreading oil the length of the fuselage. Eventually the turret fell off. This one happened at Nantes on 11/12 Jun 44


 Damage caused by a mid-air collision with another Lanc.

Damaged caused by a mid-air collision. The damage made little difference to the handling of the craft

Damage caused by a 1,000 lb hitting this Lanc BI from above.

 Damage to a Halifax of 429 sqn done by a JU88 with cannon and machinegun fire on a raid to Berlin late1943- early 1944.





Sources: The Bomber Command Handbook 1939-1945, Raiding the Reich, RCAF Squadrons and Aircraft