Why WW2’s Most Produced Bomber Had A Bad Reputation

Why WW2’s Most Produced Bomber Had A Bad Reputation | World War Wings Videos

YouTube / Imperial War Museums

Problem Plane?

The B-24 Liberator played a key role in America’s bombing efforts around the world. However, despite being the most produced bomber of all time, it also suffered a bad reputation. In total, there were around 19,000 Liberators that were built between 1940 and 1945, the most of any bomber ever. 

YouTube / Imperial War Museums

Though a flying boat was the starting point for its design, it proved to be terrible at landing on water. In fact, the aircraft was prone to sinking and the survival rates of the crew after ditching were so low. In an attempt to solve the problem, both the British and American forces reinforced the bomb bay but concluded that only a complete redesign would make the B-24 less sinkable.

YouTube / Imperial War Museums 

Due to its boxy appearance, it was never as popular as the more streamlined B-17. Although it could fly faster, further, and with greater bomb load, the plane was more challenging to control, gaining a reputation as a dangerous aircraft. 

YouTube / Imperial War Museums

In 1943, it earned the reputation of a so-called “problem plane” because of how frequently it was involved in accidents during training. However, this can be attributed more to inexperienced pilots and insufficient training than the aircraft itself, as the overall accident rate proved to be similar to that of the B-17. 

Do you think the Liberator was a “problem” plane for the US Air Force? 

 

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