Fuel tank, Latham 47.02
On January 10, 1929, fisherman Martin Jørgensen found a fuel tank on the shore at Borge in Lofoten. His son, Julian Sortland, reported this to Lofotposten’s editorial staff, 📜 who were further asked to inform the police chief. The tank was handed in to the local sheriff and then transported to the police chief in Svolvær.
Newspaper descriptions of the tank contained details such as: “The drain pipe is worn away, but the filler pipe and drain pipe are in order, the plugs are attached by strings. Around both ends of the tank is an indented edge, and the paint is slightly scraped off. As far as one can see there is no inscription. At one end of the tank is a hemispherical bulge.”📜
The chief of police in Svolvær was able to confirm that the tank’s filler pipe bore a brass plate almost identical to that on the tank found in October 1928. This tank, however, could hold only 500 litres. The plate read: “Essence. Contenance 500 litres, Hydravion Latham.”
The tank was empty and dry inside, and since it remained sealed with taps closed, investigators concluded that the fuel had been exhausted during the Latham’s flight. This was used as a new basis for calculating how far the flying boat had travelled before the tanks were removed from the hull.
This tank was later donated to the current Norwegian Maritime Museum in Oslo, and is now on display at the Polar Museum in Tromsø, The Arctic University museum of Norway. The tank was digitized in 2021 by AHR, The Arctic University of Norway.