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RFC parachutes ban

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Ian Mackersey View Drop Down

Joined: 09 Jul 2009
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    Posted: 14 Jul 2009 at 06:46
For my book about WWI aviators I am anxious to find the official source of the famous ban on the use of parachutes in the RFC/RNAS/RAF at a time when the German aircrew had begun to use them. I understand that the edict was issued in 1917 by the British 'Air Board' which is quoted as declaring: 'It is the opinion of the Board that the presence of such an apparatus might impair the fighting spirit of pilots and cause them to abandon machines which might otherwise be capable of returning to base for repair.'
Another reason was said to have been a practical one - that the static-line early chutes were too bulky to fit into the cockpits. But the Board doesn't appear to have used this as a justification.
Can anyone suggest in which archive there might reside today the minutes of the Board's discussions that led to this unsympathetic decision - and who exactly were the members of that body. Or any published literature on the subject - early C&C Journals perhaps?
Ian Mackersey
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