Published on Tuesday, 15 January 2013 19:14
A Spitfire plane in motion
The excavation of Spitfire fighter planes buried by retreating Allied forces during World War II will not occur beneath people’s homes, the managing director of the local company hired to look for the war remnants said.
The search for the buried aircraft, estimated to be about 60, and their spare parts expanded to a township in Yangon Region last week after beginning in a town in Kachin State early last month, Htoo Htoo Zaw, managing director of Shwe Taung Paw Co., said.
He said the search was in its preliminary stage and that if any planes were found beneath people’s homes they would not be excavated.
Htoo Htoo Zaw’s company, the Department of Civil Aviation, and UK firm DJC Co. signed a two-year deal with Nay Pyi Taw last October that will see half of any recovered aircraft go to the government, 30 percent to DJC and 20 percent to his firm.
A Ministry of Transport official, however, said the Union government wanted just one plane for display. The official, who asked not to be named, added, “We agreed to divide the rest.”
British aviation enthusiast David Cundall, a representative of DJC, expects to find 36 Spitfires buried in Mingaladon Township in Yangon Region, 18 in Kachin State’s Myikyina town and six in Mandalay Region’s Meiktila town.
An American company, TSI Co., will help locate and excavate the planes, Htoo Htoo Zaw said. The search is in the surveying phase and no excavation has occurred yet, he added.
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