Mierzęcice Pyrzowice Airport 2013

Kraków 2013-05-10

The airport Mierzęcice Pyrzowice

Mierzęcice Pyrzowice airport on the map of Poland. 2011.
Mierzęcice Pyrzowice airport on the map of Poland. 2011.

Mierzęcice Pyrzowice airport on the map of Poland. 2011. Photo GoogleMaps
Mierzęcice Pyrzowice airport on the map of Poland. 2011. Photo GoogleMaps

Mierzęcice Pyrzowice airport on the map of Poland. 2011. Photo GoogleMaps
Mierzęcice Pyrzowice airport on the map of Poland. 2011. Photo GoogleMaps

Katowice Airport 2010. Photo by Karol Placha Hetman
Katowice Airport 2010. Photo by Karol Placha Hetman

Mierzęcice

Mierzęcice is located in the Silesian Voivodeship, in the Będzin District. Is the seat of the commune. It performs agricultural, residential and recreational functions due to the Przeczyce reservoir.

The Mierzęcice commune is located in the central part of the Silesian Upland, 25 km north of Katowice. According to data from 2002, the Mierzęcice Commune has 51.27 square km. Farmland covers 67% and forests 15%. The commune is 13.93% of the poviat's area. In 2004, the municipality was inhabited by 7 305 people, 3 748 women, 3 557 men, population density is 142 people per square km. According to data from 2002, the average income per capita was PLN 1,225.88.

Geography of the area. The area belongs to the Upper Silesia Highland with the highest elevation of 397 m above sea level. The Czarna Przemsza River flows through the eastern part of the commune. There is also the Przeczycki Lake with an area of 6 square kilometers. The northern part of the commune is covered by forests constituting the Forest Protection Belt of the Upper Silesian Industrial District. There are two middle schools and five elementary schools, two kindergartens and an Out-of-School Work Center in the commune. About 900 children are taught in institutions.

Through the village runs National Road No. 78 in the east-west direction, which connects Chmielnik with Chałupki, by the southern border of the Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth. In turn from the National Road No. 1 from the south-east to the Airport runs the Expressway S 1 with a length of about 12 km.

The Airport itself lies on the border of the Mierzęcice and Ożarowice Communes, simultaneously on the border of the Będziński and Tarnogórski Poviats.

History of the Mierzęcice Airport

After the German attack, Mierzęcice was incorporated into Germany. Not to the General Government. In accordance with German ideology, the military system began to develop in the former western territories of the Commonwealth. The area of interest was intended for the foundation of a military training ground, whose main object was to be the airport.

According to the decision of the occupation authorities, the construction of the airport began in 1940. The swampy area was chosen between the villages; Mierzęcice, Pyrzowice (Ożarowice) and Zendek. With the displacement of the population, the Germans did not have a great problem, because it was the extermination of indigenous people, or Silesians and Poles. A large percentage of this population was used by the occupant for forced labor.

The complex was called Zendek. The airport itself was originally (probably) named Tarnowitz. But from 1937, there was an airport in Germany with the same name. Therefore, to avoid mistakes, the nave has been changed.

First, the melioration works began. The kilometers of drainage ditches were dug and hundreds of meters of drainage were installed. The water was discharged to the ponds with planted wicker and sweet flag. Overgrowing ponds were to be used in the future to obtain peat as an energy material. In places planned for RWY land and rubble were brought from demolished houses. The area was leveled.

The airport was designed in accordance with contemporary trends. Three RWY are marked out on the triangle plan. In the direction of 14/32 RWY with a length of 1,000 m, RWY in the direction of 04/22 with a length of 1 500 m, and RWY in the direction of 09/27 with a length of 1 500 m. All runways were 50 meters wide and the bitumen-concrete surface or asphalt-basalt. Such a configuration was to guarantee the possibility of a safe landing, regardless of the direction of the wind blowing.

Mierzęcice airport. The original RWY system. 1943. Photo by Karol Placha Hetman
Mierzęcice airport. The original RWY system. 1943. Photo by Karol Placha Hetman

From the very beginning, the airport served as a stage for air units heading to and from the Eastern Front and its supply. Gliding training for future pilots of the "invincible army" was also conducted there.

In 1942, the airport received the name Udetfeld in honor of the German air force ace from the First World War, General Ernst Udet, who in 1941, committed suicide, protesting against the policy of Hitler (?!).

At the end of the war, thanks to the German air engineer, tests began on the area of the jet aircraft with Messerschmitt 163 Komet rocket propulsion. A pilot school was also established, which contributed to the creation of two squadrons of the Me 163 aircraft.

The fiasco of military operations meant that the Germans left the airport without a fight in January 1945 (probably 1945-01-19), partly destroying them. On the runways, explosive charges were placed at equal intervals. Detonation of loads created deep breaks in the surface. The Soviets were pouring in very quickly and the airport was operating.

The airport in Polish hands

After the outbreak of the Korean War and the blockade of Berlin, the Kremlin forced us to develop military aviation over the need to defend our own borders. It was decided that Mierzęcice Airport would become the place of homing 39. and 40. PLMs included in the 7th DLM in Krakow.

In the years 1949-1951, the airport was rebuilt and expanded with the thought of operating an aircraft with a turbojet drive. The basic fighting equipment were to be Jakowlew Jak-23 planes.

Jak-23 nb 16 at Mierzęcice Airport. The beginning of the 50's of the twentieth century. Photo by LAC
Jak-23 nb 16 at Mierzęcice Airport. The beginning of the 50's of the twentieth century. Photo by LAC

The same plane, Yak-23 nb 16 at the Polish Aviation Museum Czyżyny. 2012. Photo of Karol Placha Hetman
The same plane, Yak-23 nb 16 at the Polish Aviation Museum Czyżyny. 2012. Photo of Karol Placha Hetman

The same plane, Jak-23 nb 16 at the Polish Aviation Museum Czyżyny. 2019. Photo by Karol Placha Hetman
The same plane, Jak-23 nb 16 at the Polish Aviation Museum Czyżyny. 2019. Photo by Karol Placha Hetman

Jakovlev Jak-17 in Czyżyny 2019. Photo by Karol Placha Hetman
Jakovlev Jak-17 in Czyżyny 2019. Photo by Karol Placha Hetman

Military Units

In 1951, the 2nd PLM was trained on turbojet airplanes at Bemowo Airport. Since 1952, the 2nd PLM with Jak-23 planes has been operating at the Czyżyny-Rakowice airport in Kraków. The unit's commander at that time was Jan Frej-Bielecki. On the basis of the 2. PLM personnel state, the next two hunting regiments begin to be organized, constituting together with it the 7th DLM OPL. It is 39. PLM and 40. PLM. The Mierzęcice Airport was renovated for newly created regiments.

  1. PLM was established on 1951-04-17.

Already in February 1952, 39. PLM is in Mierzęcice, as JW. 4208. Regiments from the 7th DLM for exercises use the Błędowska Desert range. 39. PLM, apart from the Mierzęcice Airport, was available to the Kamień Śląski Airport in the Opolskie Voivodeship. There, at least once a year, the Regiment was moved. The entanglements were usually related to the exercises, but also with the renovation of the DS. and DK. Such renovation was carried out on average every 5 years (to varying degrees). Among others at the turn of 1983-1984.

During the service, the unit number of the JW. 4208 has been changed to JW. 1901. This issue lasted the longest, until the 39. PLM was demolished, that is until 1987. Throughout the service 39. PLM was based at Mierzęcice Airport (1952-1987).

In parallel to the 39th PLM, 40 PLMs were formed. Also at the Czyżyny Airport and also was ferrysed in February 1952, to the Mierzęcice Airport. But already on 1953-01-17, he was beaten with an air throw to the Świdwin Airport, where he remains until today (2013), as the 40th ELT, composed of 1 Tactical Aviation Wing.

Initially, Jakowlew Jak-23 fighter planes were exploited. It is worth noting that the 39th and 40th PLM never operated fighters with propeller propulsion. Very soon 39th PLM is converted into MiG-15 planes, acquired from other Polish regiments, and then into new Lim-1/2.

SB Lim-2 nb 308 at Mierzęcice Airport. Photo by LAC
SB Lim-2 nb 308 at Mierzęcice Airport. Photo by LAC

SB Lim-2 nb 304. Czyżyny 2019. Photo by Karol Placha Hetman
SB Lim-2 nb 304. Czyżyny 2019. Photo by Karol Placha Hetman

SB Lim-2 nb 2004 Polish Aviation Museum 2012. Photo by Karol Placha Hetman
SB Lim-2 nb 2004 Polish Aviation Museum 2012. Photo by Karol Placha Hetman

Lim-2 nb 1230. Czyżyny 2019. Photo by Karol Placha Hetman
Lim-2 nb 1230. Czyżyny 2019. Photo by Karol Placha Hetman

In the autumn of 1957, 39th PLM received for the equipment the first new aircraft type Lim-5, and then supersonic aircraft MiG-19.

Lim-5 nb 1414. Czyżyny 2019. Photo by Karol Placha Hetman
Lim-5 nb 1414. Czyżyny 2019. Photo by Karol Placha Hetman

MiG-19

MiG-19 PM nb 905 at the airport. 1965. Photo by LAC
MiG-19 PM nb 905 at the airport. 1965. Photo by LAC

The same plane, MiG-19 nb 905. Czyżyny. 2012. Photo by Karol Placha Hetman
The same plane, MiG-19 nb 905. Czyżyny. 2012. Photo by Karol Placha Hetman

The same plane, MiG-19 nb 905. Czyżyny. 2012. Photo by Karol Placha Hetman
The same plane, MiG-19 nb 905. Czyżyny. 2012. Photo by Karol Placha Hetman

In the second half of the 50th century, the Kremlin reluctantly agreed to sell MiG-19 fighters to Poland. In 1958, 39th PLM was selected, alongside 62th PLM Krzesiny and 28th PLM Słupsk, to re-launch the first supersonic fighter aircraft in Poland. Pilots from Mierzęcice were trained on MiG-19 in Poland at the airport in Modlin at the University of Pilots. The introduction of MiG-19 fighters at the Mierzęcice Airport status testified to the significance of this airport in the defense system of Poland, and the planes were deployed to cover the entire western part of the country. MiG-19 P aircraft were in the equipment of the first squadron of the regiment from 1958. The number of MiG-19 P and PM aircraft in the Regiment has changed. The most machines (max 16 items) were in the state of the Regiment after handing over some of the aircraft from the first squadron 62. PLM.

In the spring of 1962, a group of pilots left for CCCP for training in intercepting with guided missiles RS-2 U, which were equipped with MiG-19 PM. The whole group consisted of pilots from the WOPK command, 28th and 39th PLM, and found in it: Major pil. Czesław Kantyka - commander of the group, Cpt. pil. Henryk Dańko, compare pil. Mieczysław Furmanek, Cpt. pil. Bogusław Jaromin, por pil. Wojciech Matonóg, Cpt. pil. Zdzisław Skrzydłowski, compare pil. Władysław Waltoś and arming service officer from WOPK.

On 1965-07-01, on stock 39. PLM were: 5 MiG-19 PM, 9 MiG-19 P, 6 Lim-5, 13 Lim-2, 8 MiG-15 UTI, 2 TS-8 Bies and 1 PZL An-2.

On 1966-08-02, in the 39th PLM a plane crash took place. The regiment was sent to the alternate aerodrome in Kamień Śląski. The pilots were preparing for the night's departure. He was the first to lead captain. pil. Eugeniusz Nasiorowski, on the MiG-19 airplane P nb 727. During the take-off, after 100-150 m run-up, the aircraft underwent asymmetry of thrust. The right engine worked at the maximum thrust - "forsaż", and the left went only to the "maximum" or "denomination" (the post-accident commission could not be determined). The plane strayed from the waist and glided across the grassy part of the airport directly onto the stall filled with planes. Pilot seeing the situation, afraid of collision with aircraft, picked up the machine. Too low speed caused that the plane disappeared from a height of 5-10 m to the wing. At the time of the fall fuel spilled and an explosion took place. The other pilots of the squadron in their prepared airplanes watched all this tragic situation. Firemen immediately started to fight the fire, trying to extinguish the burning plane, and also to prevent the fire on planes on the stand. Unfortunately, Capt. pil. Eugeniusz Nasiorowski died in a burning machine. Honor his memory!

During the service, Pułk handed over several MiG-19 P, PM aircraft to 28th PLM. The withdrawal of the MiG-19 fighters from 39th PLM started in 1965. The last flights on MiG-19s were carried out in May 1967. Also in May 1967, the last few planes were handed over to the 28th PLM, which used the fighter the longest.

MiG-21 PF nb 1704 at Mierzęcice Airport. The picture was taken after 1966. Photo by LAC
MiG-21 PF nb 1704 at Mierzęcice Airport. The picture was taken after 1966. Photo by LAC

MiG-21 PFM nb 5612 at Mierzęcice Airport. Probably the beginning of the 80's, after transferring the plane from 26. PLM Zegrze Pomorskie. Photo by LAC
MiG-21 PFM nb 5612 at Mierzęcice Airport. Probably the beginning of the 80's, after transferring the plane from 26. PLM Zegrze Pomorskie. Photo by LAC

MiG-21 PFM nb 4205. Czyżyny 2019. Photo by Karol Placha Hetman
MiG-21 PFM nb 4205. Czyżyny 2019. Photo by Karol Placha Hetman

After the withdrawal from the MiG-19 aircraft service, Pułk continued to use Lim-5, Lim-5 P and SB Lim-2 planes. In 1966, the first MiG-21 PF machines were delivered to the Pulk. These were new planes. In 1969, the Regiment received MiG-21 PFM fighters. Also new. Both types were in operation until the Regiment was dissolved, ie until 1987. Watro, note that other militant versions of MiG-21 in 39th PLM in Mierzęcice were not exploited. If they were, then exceptionally and in single copies. The complement of the combat versions were several school items MiG-21 U and MiG-21 US.

In 1973, after the reorganization in 39. PLM, the number of squadrons from three was reduced to two. It was the 1st ELM and the 2nd ELM, commonly referred to as "volatile" and the technical squadron, which protected them from the current service and removed the existing failures.

The difficult economic situation in Poland, caused by the ineptitude of the communist authorities, forces the Ministry of Defense to reduce arms. In regiments, the number of aircraft used decreases. To maintain air habits among pilots, TS-11 Iskra training and training aircraft were introduced extensively. However, it does not seem that much and further reductions are necessary. 39. PLM is disassembled. The flag of the Pułk was handed over to the commander of the WOPK in Warsaw.

Airplanes used in 39th PLM:

Turbojets; Jak-17 W Agata, Jak-23, MiG-15, UTI MiG-15, SB Lim-1/2, Lim-2, Lim-5, MiG-19 P, MiG-19 PM, MiG-21 PF, MiG -21 PFM, MiG-21 U, MiG-21 US, TS-11 Iskra. Piston aircraft; TS-8 Bies, An-2, PZL-104 Wilga.

After demoulding (1987) 39 PLM, efficient MiG-21 planes were transferred to the 10th PLM Łask. Mierzęcice airport and the unit stationed on it was transformed into the Airport Service Command as JW. 4043. The area of the airport has also become a non-permanent database of end-of-life aircraft. Using the engineering and aviation personnel remaining after the dissolution of the 39th PLM on 1987-09-01, 51 Field Aviation Workshops were created, whose task was to refurbish Mi-24 W / D combat helicopters. Division 51 of the PWL was dissolved on 1990-11-31 (JW 2490).

Mi-24 nb 177 renovated at Mierzęcice Airport. The end of the 80's of the twentieth century. Photo by LAC
Mi-24 nb 177 renovated at Mierzęcice Airport. The end of the 80's of the twentieth century. Photo by LAC

In 1990, Mierzęcice Airport is becoming a spectacle of cutting several MiG-21 PF machines to scrap, to demonstrate to the free world a one-sided weapon reduction.

MiG-21 PF for scrap. Mierzęcice airport. 1990. Photo by LAC
MiG-21 PF for scrap. Mierzęcice airport. 1990. Photo by LAC

2 Fighter Aviation Squadron in Mierzęcice

In the nineties, the army did not want to dispose of the Airport, hoping to reactivate air units in the new post-communist reality. Therefore, at that time one of the 11 PLM squadrons from Starachowice was moved to Mierzęcice Airport.

In January 1989, from 11. PLM Starachowice, the 2nd Fighter Aviation Squadron was separated and it was relayed to Mierzęcice Airport. At the Strachowice Airport, the 1st ELM remained. In Mierzęcice, the logistics security was implemented by the Airport Security Battalion (JW. 4043). The squadron's pilots were mainly the promotion pilots - Dęblin, 1988, and technicians - soldiers from the School in Oleśnica, promotion of 1989.

Such an organization 2. ELM survived equally 10 years, when in 1999, the Squadron returned to the 11th PLM Starachowice. But already in November 1999, the 11th PLM was disassembled. The last plane 2. ELM after removing the disability and start-up service flew away from the Mierzęcice Airport on 1999-05-20 to the 10th PLM in Łask (MIG-21 MF lateral number 9011).

A special feature of 2. ELM was having its own renovation group. It was the only case in which the squadron entering the regiment's organization had its own repair facilities, which shortened to a minimum the time of performing current services, as well as removed failures that occurred during flights.

During the training of pilots, the Squadron lost 3 MIG-21 MF aircraft:

In June 1989, during the first independent landing, the MiG-21 nb 7715 plane was damaged. The aircraft was destroyed due to damage.

On 1991-03-01, making flights in formation, in the area of the airport, with the change of the formation there was a collision of two MIG-21 MF aircraft with numbers 8015 A (No. 96008015, pilot captain Zawada), 7405 (No. 96007405, pilot captain Wojcik). Four planes made the flight in formation. After entering the clouds, a pattern change was started. The third and fourth aircraft collided with each other. Captain Zawada catapulted. Captain Wójcik landed happily.

On 1991-04-13, Cpt. pil. Kusiak on MiG-21 MF 7715. During the approach to landing, the engine cover broke off, resulting in a drop in engine speed and power loss. The plane was renovated.

The three aircraft were the only machines lost by the 2nd ELM during its reliance on Mierzęcice Airport. It is worth noting that the Squadron did not suffer any loss of personnel during the training and execution of combat tasks. 11. PLM was twice awarded for flight safety. During the 38th Air Safety Conference of the Polish Armed Forces in Kiekrz (1996-02-08) for flight safety in 1995, and during the 41st Conference of Flight Safety of the Polish Armed Forces in Kiekrz (1999-02-02) for the safety of flights in 1998 (for the second time).

The squadron was equipped with MIG-21 M, MIG-21 MF, MIG-21 UM, TS-11 Iskra aircraft.

TS-11 Iskra nb 1415. Czyżyny 2019. Photo by Karol Placha Hetman
TS-11 Iskra nb 1415. Czyżyny 2019. Photo by Karol Placha Hetman

Written by Karol Placha Hetman