28 B-24’s took off at 0808 hours to bomb Baja RR Bridge. None returned early. 26 dropped 77 tons of 2,000 lb (.1 nose and non-delay fusing) GP bombs on target at 1115 hours from 18,000 to 19,000 feet. 2 dropped 6 tons on alternate target Vinkovci (4518N – 1822E) because of malfunctions of bomb release mechanism. 1 of 26 returned 1 ton to base for the same reason. 28 returned to base at 1340 hours. None lost. None missing. None at friendly fields. There were 28 effective sorties.
II. Route and Assault
Rendezvoused with 376th Group at San Vito on course at 10,000 feet at 0920 hours and as the third Group in Wing fell in line behind the 98th (Wing leader) and 450th Groups. Proceeded to keypoint Ragusa (4232N – 1822E) to Ilinci (4507N – 1906E) to IP Villany (4553N 1828E) to target attacking on an axis of 45 degrees true. Bombing was by individual boxes visually. Rallied right and proceeded directly to Vinkovci (4518N – 1822E) alternate target to permit 2 a/c to drop their bombs which had failed to release on primary target. The formation proceeded directly to Ragusa (4232N – 1822E) to base. Rendezvous was made over San Vito above a 6/10 deck of low clouds. Over eastern portion of Adriatic, the Dalmation coast and over Dinaric Alps, formation encountered up to 8/10 middle level clouds forcing a rapid climb. From just north of Brod to target no low clouds. Over target 0/10 low clouds but 6/10 high clouds just above flight level. Visibility over target 15 miles in slight haze. Wind over target at bombing altitude from 210 degrees at 15 mph. On return bases in southern Italy were covered by 10/10 layer of low clouds at 5,000 feet. Approximately 25 P-38’s and 30 P-51’s were seen between 1047 and 1200 hours in the areas of both targets although no escort was planned. No radio jamming was reported.
Mission photographs indicate that A-1 section scored two direct hits on Eastern end of bridge and one on RR tracks 500 feet east. A-2 section had one probable direct hit on Eastern section of bridge. B-1 and B-2 sections results are obscured by smoke from 1st two sections’ bombing. Pictures reveal that the Eastern span of bridge is down and the tracks to the east cut.
IV. Enemy Resistance
A. Fighters: No E/A were sighted
B. Flak: 2 crews reported S-I-H flak at the target.
[No losses. No damage. No casualties. No Victories.]