Aerodromes

AERODROME - DAUGAVPILS

Daugavpils




NOTES
  • The Daugavpils aerodrome was built before the first world war and was used by the Imperial Russian Air Service during the war. From this airfield Olgerts Teteris, Narciss Puskelis and Alfreds Valeika flew combat sorties against the Germans, who reached the opposite side of the Daugava.
  • August 21, 1921 - 1st Lt. Jevlampjevs is dispatched to Daugavpils to determine the suitablility of the site (located less than a kilometre inland from the north shore of the Daugava, 5-6 km upstream from Daugavpils) for a permanent military airfield. Here, he discovered two abandoned aircraft which were turned over to J.Prieditis to determine their fate. From this date onwards, a regular summer aviation training camp was held each year at this site.
  • Summer Aviation Training Camp - starting in 1921 and continuing until the end of 1939 a camp was held at Daugavpils every summer. It began in April or May and continued until August or September. The base had four old wooden hangars for the aircraft, while the crews were accommodated off-base. Units stationed elsewhere (there was no military aviation unit actually stationed permanently at Daugavpils itself) would temporarily re-base to Daugavpils for a few weeks at a time, then be replaced by a different unit.
    During the camp the flight/combat training was quite intensive. The crews practiced ground attack, utilizing the polygon belonging to the artillery units. The aircraft would drop 50 kg cement bombs from an altitude of approximately 2000 m. These bombs were equipped with a smoke 'bomb' which would be triggered on impact, allowing the crews to assess their accuracy. They also practiced aerial gunnery, formation flying and shooting at a sleeve towed by another, slower, aircraft. Aerobatics were practiced, various competitions took place, and the units practiced their navigation skills in this region of Latvia which was not as familiar to the crews as their home bases. Damaged aircraft were repaired in Daugavpils' workshop if the damage was not too severe. Otherwise, the plane would be dismantled and shipped back to its home aerodrome by rail.
  • September 16, 1923 - the Latvian Aero Club had planned an Aviation Festival on this date, but the plans fell through and the event did not actually take place.
  • July 14, 1927 - J.Kaire suffers a fatal crash in a Sopwith Camel at the Daugavpils summer training camp aerodrome.
  • August 6, 1927 - after completing a gunnery exercise at the Daugavpils summer training camp, Lumbergs flew out over the Daugava and died when he tried to fly Sopwith Camel #9 under a bridge.
  • August 12, 1931 - two crashes: Ritenbergs and Zeile died when their Letov #8 went into an unrecoverable spin. Arturs Kregeris, completing bombing exercises at the Daugavpils summer training camp, had to make a forced landing near Zalumi in DH9A #4.
  • August 29, 1931 - Augusts Lapins dies when his Martinsyde ADC.1 #11 crashes as a result of a gunnery practice incident at the Daugavpils summer training camp.
  • July 8, 1934 - Ieva and Tirulis make a forced landing in DH9A #10 at Batari, near Daugavpils.
  • September 2, 1934 - Aviation Festival
  • June 15, 1936 - Huge Freimanis suffers a fatal crash in Bristol Bulldog #74 while landing at Daugavpils aerodrome.
  • September 28, 1936 - the first waypoint of the second day in the first "Flight Around Latvia" competition.
  • September 26, 1937 - waypoint of the second "Flight Around Latvia" competition.
  • October 2, 1938 - the first waypoint of the second day of the "Flight Around Latvia" competition. The aviators landed at the aerodrome, refuelled, and continued towards Varaklani without incident.
  • May 26, 1940 - Aviation Festival
  • 1941 - 1944 (German Occupation) - (Luftwaffe units based in Daugavpils during the German occupation)
  • Present day (2004) - 1 Aviacijas Eskadrila, Transportlidmasinu Posms (1st Aviation Squadron, Transportation Unit) flying Antonov An-2 and PZL-104.

LATVIANAVIATION.COM contents copyright © 2017 Gunārs Zūlis and heirs. All Rights Reserved.
Contributors of individual materials retain all rights to their collections and creative works.
LATVIANAVIATION.COM is a LATVIANS.COM project.

Design and hosting by [Clear-and-Simple] · Chicago · New York