Dornier Wal XI seaplane wreckage is located in the middle of Gnejna Bay on the northwest coast of Malta. Dornier flying boat wreck lies at depth of 12-15 metres on sandy seabed. The plane wreck consists of only part of the fuselage together with the sponsons, and some parts of the cockpit controls including the rudder pedal. The plane force-landed in the sea and was towed to Malta in 1932.
Dornier Wal wreck is a nice dive site for freedivers. For scuba divers interested in airplane wrecks, there are several other dive sites in Malta: Bristol Beaufighter, Bristol Blenheim Bomber, Mosquito Fighter Bomber and Lockheed P2V Neptune. These plane wrecks are between 30 and 42 m deep. Technical airplane wreck dives are Junkers Ju 88 and Liberator Bomber B24, both at 57 m depth, and Fairey Swordfish at 70 m depth.
Dornier Do J Wal seaplane wreck history
Dornier Do J Wal was a German design seaplane built in Italy between the World Wars. Wal ("whale") was a twin-engine flying boat, about 17 m in length with 22 m wingspan. It had crew of three and carried 8-10 passengers.
This Dornier Wal XI with registration l-AZEA and operated by Italian airline SANA made a forced landing in the sea near Malta after an engine fire on Tuesday 16th February 1932. Passengers and crew were brought ashore on HMS Brillant, and the flying boat was towed to Malta.
The aircraft wreckage in Gnejna Bay which was thought to be CANT Z.506B floatplane was positively identified as Dornier Wal flying boat by Malta Aviation Museum, after researching the subject in great detail together with Dornier Museum in Germany. There is a cleat still in place which confirms that the wreck is a Wal.
More info about Dornier Wal XI dive site
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