Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Cold case investigation - Yerecoin WA - 15 Nov 1967

Hi all,

This is a classic Australian close encounter case. My own Australian catalogue recorded the following:

16 Nov 1967 Yerecoin WA CE1 1830hrs Poole

A farmer, Mr A Poole, was out mustering sheep in a land rover when he became aware of a humming sound which increased in intensity. He then saw an object at a distance of half a kilometre. It approached his vehicle and stopped next to it at about one to two metres distance. The humming noise was very strong and he could feel vibrations from it. It looked like an inverted saucer, being some three to six metres in diameter and one point six to two metres high, with four windows, two round and two square on the side visible to him. It was a grey metallic colour. It seemed to hover just a metre off the ground. He demanded to know what it was doing there and he heard an echo of his own voice. No unusual electromagnetic effects were noticed. He attempted to get out of his land rover but as he did so the object ascended. By the time he was out, two to three seconds, it was out of sight, although he could still hear a humming sound. No traces were left. The source I cited was AFSR No 8 p13.

NICAP/APRO:

I started my search for more a more original source with the NICAP "UFO Investigator," but a search through my electronic copies, found nothing on the case. However, the November/December 1967 issue of "The APRO Bulletin" did, on page 5. This report reads:

"Another landing among Australian UAO Incidents.

Mr Allen Pool, 43. a farm manager of Yericorn, Western Australia has made the claim that a saucer landed in a paddock beside his land rover on the night of the 17th of November. According to his story, Pool said the object was circular, about 15 to 20 feet in diameter and about the same height as his land rover. He said it was so close to him that he barely had room to open the car door. At the same time that the object landed, Pool claimed, his wife noted interference on the TV set inside the house. This all took place at about 6.30pm.

Chronologically, the events occurred thusly. Pool was in a paddock about a half mile from the farmhouse and was driving slowly looking for sheep when he heard a whine like an electric  motor at high speed. He said he looked up and saw the object coming straight at him. He figured it was about a half mile away and 400-500 feet altitude when he first spotted it. He brought his land rover to a halt and the disc stopped right alongside him.

"It was flat on the bottom and dome-shaped on top just like an upturned saucer," Pool told the police when he reported the incident. "It appeared to be made of a metal which was  smokey-grey in colour, there were no lights on it but there were portholes like windows around it and there seemed to be a  cabin in front."

Pool said he wasn't able to see inside of the object, that the machine did not touch the ground when it stopped but seemed to hover just above it. When Pool stepped out of his vehicle the disc took off "like a rocket."

This article in "The APRO Bulletin" doesn't provide the source for the account it gives.

Original source of the story?

In looking for the most original source of the Yerecoin account, I could find, I took a visit to the South Australian State Library and consulted a microfische copy of the main West Australian newspaper looking for any story.

There, on pages 1 and 13 of "The West Australian" for Friday 17 November 1967 I found a lengthy account. This account provides a date for the event of Wednesday 15 Nov 1967 and is more likely to be correct than the other dates I have provided previously. Note also that the newspaper provides the witness' name as Alan Pool and the location as Yerecoin.

Newspaper account;

"WA man: Flying saucer near me

Yerecoin farm manager Alan Pool (43) said yesterday that a flying saucer had landed in one of his paddocks a few feet from him.

It was so close that he was unable to fully open the door of the vehicle in which he was sitting.

Mr Pool's employer, Mr D V Waters of Yerecoin, who owns the farm, said that Mr Pool had worked for him for 11 years.

Mr Waters said: "If Alan says he saw a flying saucer you can take it from me there was one."

The saucer had been reported to the police and the RAAF.

Loud noise:

Mr Pool said that he was in his vehicle in a paddock about a mile away from the farmhouse at 6.30pm on Wednesday when he heard a loud, penetrating, humming noise similar to that of an electric generator.

"I saw this thing about 400 ft in the air, half a mile away, and approaching rapidly from the east."

"I thought it was an aircraft. It sped towards me and landed next to the vehicle."

"The whirring noise was loud and frightening."

Hovered:

He said it seemed to land, but when he looked closer it was hovering a few inches from the ground. It was a grey metal colour, about 12 feet in diameter and about 5 feet high. There were six portholes. Two in the centre were square and two more on each side were round. It looked like an inverted saucer. There were no other protruding features. There were no signs of propulsion and he could not see through he portholes. (More on page 13.)

"Saucer seen" (A photo of Mr Pool appears here.)

Mr Pool said "I did not know what to do. I partly opened the door and swore aloud. "To my astonishment the words were repeated. It could not have been an echo. There was a strong wind and it would have been impossible to receive an echo in that position."

"I partly opened the door and got one leg out of the  vehicle when the saucer took off vertically. I lost sight of it as it rose above the roof of the vehicle. I pushed my head outside and looked up, but it had vanished."

He said he thought he was going mad. He sat in the vehicle in fright and rolled a cigarette.

No sign:

Then he got out of the vehicle and looked at the ground - but there was no sign of where the saucer had been. The grass was undisturbed and there were no burn marks. He did not know whether to report the sighting or to say anything about it.

He finally decided top drive home and tell his wife. His wife told him that she had been watching television at the time and the picture rolled. The only time this had happened before was when a satellite passed overhead.

Mr Pool reported the sighting to the New Norcia police, who advised him to telephone the CIB in Perth. He also telephoned the Pearce RAAF base but he said the people there sounded sceptical.

He thought that the white roof of his vehicle might have attracted the flying saucer.

Mr Waters said Mr Pool was very level-headed. he said "Alan came to see me about an hour afterwards and he was still frightened. He was white-faced."

Later Mr Pool said he had been sceptical about flying saucers. "I am not offering any theories about it," he said "All I know is that it was unlike anything we know on earth."

Not on radar:

Wing Commander G Shadford,  of the RAAF at Pearce said that no aircraft from the base was flying at the time of the reported  sighting and nothing was picked up on radar. Mr Pool's report was the only one received on Wednesday night. Mr Pool would be asked to fill in a form to give the complete details of the sighting and the RAAF would decided if further investigation was warranted.

A spokesman for air traffic control at the Perth airport said there would have been many aircraft in the New Norcia area at the time of the reported sighting. These would range in size from a Friendship to light planes.

A weather bureau spokesman said the only weather balloon released on Wednesday evening went up from the Perth airport at 7.15pm."

Second newspaper article:

"The West Australian" of 18 Nov 1967, page 12 carried a follow-up article.

"Saucer: No inquiry yet.

No official inquiry had been started yesterday into the reported flying saucer sighting at Yerecoin.

A RAAF spokesman at Pearce said that an airforce inquiry would be held only after all possible explanations for the sighting had been disproved.

A Department of Civil Aviation spokesman said reports of unidentified flying objects did not come within the department's jurisdiction.

Farmer manager Alan Pool who reported seeing a flying saucer in a paddock on Wednesday evening said yesterday that nothing would convince him the object was not real."

Air Force files:

Is there an account of this event in the files of the RAAF? The logical place to find one would be in  file series A703 control symbol 580/1/1 Part 8 which is the main series of UAS report files. Part 8 contains UAS reports dated between 4 Jul 1967 and 31 Dec 1967. There is only one report on the file dated 15 Nov 1967 and this is of a  fast moving lighted object travelling to the south,. reported from Gympie, Queensland at 2125hrs. There is no report  listed on this file, from Mr Pool. Perhaps he felt that RAAF Pearce were too sceptical and decided not to officially report it on paper.

The other possibility is that Pool did report it to the RAAF on paper, but the form did not make it to the RAAF's central main UFO files, but ended up on Pearce's files. I looked for such files in the NAA. File series PP959/1 control symbol 5/3/Air is titled [Western Australian Squadron Air Training Corps] Investigations of Unidentified Flying Objects with a date range of 1966-1972. It is a 52 page file but again there is no report from Mr Pool.

Some other data:

Yerecoin is 156km NNE of Perth, the capital of Western Australia.

New Norcia is 132km N of Perth.

A check of the internet failed to find any detailed investigation report published by an Australian UFO research group.

A check of Australian Flying Saucer Review No 8 published 23 August 1967 (UFOIC) revealed nothing on the event. It wouldn't be expected to, as it was published in Aug 1967 and the event was in Nov 1967. It appears my Australian catalogue reference is in error.

A check of two different electronic sky charts reveals that the Sun was still above the Western horizon at 6.30pm 15 Nov 1967.

Comment:

Based on the information in "The West Australian" as the most original source material, which I can locate, the event remains a compelling one, despite there being only one witness.

Have blog readers come across any fully investigated accounts of this event?

2 comments:

  1. Keith, this is a case I had never heard of before, and what a fascinating report it is!

    And the UFO sounds very similar to what was reported at Westall a year earlier. I wonder if the witness is still alive? I have noted that there are still people with the surname Waters resident in Yerecoin today.

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  2. Keith & Shane, I didn't include Alan poole's 16th November 1967 encounter near Yerecoin WA in the OZ Files in 1996 only dueto lack of space. Hervey describes it in his "UFOs over the Southern Hemisphere" and the VUFORS included a brief I page account on pg.13, Australian Flying Saucer Review, No.8, circa early 1968, in a 6 page roundup of the 1967 wave in WA, compiled by L.J. Locke president of the Pert UFO Research Group. It includes the West Australian photo of Poole drawing the UFO on a pad on the bonnet of his car, plus a Rigby cartoon on the affair from the Melbourne Sun News Pictorial.

    Regards,
    Bill

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