Friday, February 15, 2013

A case of radiation? Kempsey - 1985

Hi all,


The second file just available in the A9755 series from the National Archives of Australia (NAA), control symbol 14, is titled [RAAF Headquarters No 82 Bomber Wing, Amberley, Queensland] [Unusual Aerial Sightings] [UAS] [UFO - Unidentified Flying Objects] and has a date range of 31 Jul 1984 to 1994 and has been partly digitised by the NAA. Barcode is 3533481 and it is held in the Canberra office of the NAA. It is open with exception (closed 1986-1994.)

The digital copy, which anyone can read, has 92 pages and was originally referenced as 5/11/Air Part 6. "Unusual Aerial Sightings." The file opens with a copy of "Air Staff Instructions No 3/A/5 which details the operational process when UAP reports were received by RAAF bases.

What is on the file?

There are a number of low interest UAP reports from various locations in Queensland. Two of the more interesting reports were radar contacts, made by a Meteorological employee from Charlieville, Queensland, which involved radar returns on 16 and 17 Nov 1985. Details of these, from the file are:

"16th Nov 1985 approx 1500hrs 21855 metres altitude 66,000 ft Radar return HDG 086 deg T 197m/sec (app. 404kts.)

17th Nov 1985 approx 1500hrs 20302m altitude. Radar return Hdg 080 deg T 203m/sec (app 410kts.)"

The RAAF investigating officer wrote a letter to the met observer which read in part "Subsequent investigation has provided no details of RAAF aircraft at that altitude, airspeed or time. Previously, reports similar to yours have been traced to an equipment malfunction."

Startling close encounter:

Gregory Wynyard was a 24 year old Ride and Game attendant from the Gold Coast. At about 3am (DST) on the 26 Jan 2985 he was travelling with his girlfriend by car, southwards on the Pacific highway, about 45 kms north of Kempsey. The sky was overcast with on and off rain, although it was not raining at the time of the incident.

To his south he first noted the object at a low angle of elevation. He passed directly underneath it at an estimated distance of about 40 feet. It was last observed at about a 60-70 degree angle.

He described the object as "Saucer shaped on the bottom and  about 15 feet from one side to another. On the side it was about 5 feet high. I could just see the chrome or pewter metal on side only (because of the bright light radiating from it. It was just above tree height (about 40 feet.)

"I thought it was a light of some kind at first because it was perfectly still (It did not move through the entire observation.) In the centre was a blue light about the size of a large plate and I got the impression it was throbbing but I'm not exactly sure...although light was radiating from all over the object, like aura the light was strongest coming from the underneath of the craft. It made no sound at all."

A second person, Gregory's girlfriend Debbie, saw it through the back window. He awoke Debbie while driving directly under the object.


The above details were taken from the RAAF's questionanire. On this questionnaire, Wynyward wrote at one point "Is it possible that persons in the car have come into contact with radiation? If so please inform us."

On 19 Feb 1985, Flt Lt G E Haywood, RAAF Base Amberley, wrote a letter to Wynyard. The part of it which addressed the radiation question read:

"Thank you for the prompt return of your detailed report. The information supplied by you has enabled an investigation into the phenomenon to commence.

From information so far supplied, it is not possible to determine whether or not you and Miss Hinds were exposed to any radiation or in fact if there was any radiation emanating from the object. May I suggest, if you have any doubts concerning your health as a result of the incident, a visit to your local hospital or family doctor for an examination may help alleviate your fears."


There is no evidence on the file that this close encounter report was ever followed up by the RAAF. For example section 2 headed "Unit report" of the RAAF questionnaire and section 3 "Investigating officer's evaluation" are blank. This suggests to me that no further action was taken.

What was possibly a very interesting UAP event, remained unknown from 1985 until 2012 when I had the file examined and digitised.

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