Bombardier Duties

From Bombardiers’ Information File, War Department, March 1945:

Bombardier Duties: Bombardier to Crew


Cooperate with pilot: Explain to him the principles of the bombing problem. Emphasize importance of not changing altitude or airspeed radically during bombing run and of informing you before reaching bomb release point if altitude or airspeed is off. Tactfully assist him in preflight and adjustment of autopilot. Give him information on other aircraft ahead and below; talk him into formation. Report flak bursts and frontal fighter attacks.

Cooperate with navigator: Explain bombardiering to him so that he can assume role of bombardier in an emergency. Help in DR and pilotage navigation. Obtain drift and groundspeed from bombsight. Warn of approach of bad weather.

Cooperate with armament crew: Report accurately and promptly any malfunction of bombsight or other bombing equipment. Assist them in preflight of bomb racks and controls, and in loading and fuzing bombs. Assist in flight checking autopilot.

Cooperate with gunners: Assist in loading ammunition, and in preflight of guns and ammunition. Inform them of frontal fighter attacks at which they best can fire. When using remote control turrets, maintain closest coordination in transferring control.

Cooperate with radar operator: Explain the bombing problem to hun; stress importance of supplying accurate data for bombing run. When visibility permits, give him check points and keep him informed of his accuracy. Work in closest coordination when bombing through overcast; notify him if visibility allows you to take over bombing run.

Bombardier Duties: Crew to Bombardier


Pilot and copilot cooperate with you: They must coordinate closely in obtaining pre-set data, in making turn over IP, and in taking evasive action. They must adjust autopilot to obtain maximum performance for bombing. Pilot should not jockey airspeed or change altitude radically during bombing run. Before reaching bomb release point, they should notify you if altitude or airspeed is off. Pilot must make prompt but smooth, coordinated turns in following PDI.

Navigator cooperates with you: He should explain navigation to you, so that you can assume role of navigator in an emergency. He should check your computations of true airspeed, bombing altitude, wind, groundspeed, and drift. Navigator should check trail and disc speed found from bombing tables and set into bombsight. He helps to identify IP and target. On the bombing run navigator gives you the variations of airspeed and altitude and assists in making computations for offset bombing.

Armament crew cooperates with you: They assist in preflight of bomb racks and controls. They must load and fuze bombs carefully and accurately. Armament crew ground checks autopilot. They must maintain bombsight, bomb racks and controls, autopilot, guns and turrets with care and thoroughness and keep them in best possible condition.

Gunners cooperate with you: They assist in loading ammunition and in preflight of guns and ammunition. They report frontal attacks at which you best can fire. Gunners should report bomb rack malfunctions and bomb hit data.

Radar operator cooperates with you: He must work in close coordination with you on bombing run, especially when bombing through overcast. He should give you accurate information on check points, drift, bombing altitude, groundspeed, dropping angle.


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