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Radio Operator Enrico Mergos of the Brazilian radio station in Natal PQN has been in contact with the I-LAMA from the time she left Natal at 0810 gmt. He recorded all events and picked up the message to the catapult ship Schwabenland / DOFW . Mario Stoppani reported that they had engine problems and that they would return. Enrico Mergos made sure all relevant parties got notice of Mario Stoppani's problems. On the way back he assisted I-LAMA with radio direction finding signals to guide her to Natal. From that time on he was on continous radio watch.



Air France radio station PRI on Fernando de Noronha

Air France radio station PRN in Natal

Aviso  Air France IV / FNAT

   Commandante Gabriel Bonnarme

  2e Capitaine H. Rousseau

  R/O Nemes Le Gac

The French Aviso was the first ship to arrive at the site of the accident. Mario Stoppani and the crew of the Samum / D-AFAR were taken onboard. Mario Stoppani was treated for his slight injuries.  A picture of the Air France IV is on

Land plane  Ville de Montevideo / F-AOXE (Type Farman F.2200)

The site hydroretro is maintained by Gerard Hartmann and has a document called derniersavionsfarman.pdf giving more information of this kind of aircraft used for mail flights by the French. Another nice picture is on edcoatescollection .

The crew of the Ville de Montevideo / F-AOXE  assisted the Air France IV / FNAT  by circling above the site of accident and sending out direction finding signals to guide the aviso. Unfortunately the names of the crew are not known.


Apart from the crew of the Samum / D-AFAR the following German flying boats and ships were involved:


Flying boat  Boreas / D-AGAT

  • Flugkapitän Blume
  • Flugzeugführer Schuster
  • Flugzeugfunker Lenz
  • Flugmaschinist Butz

The Boreas / D-AGAT was catapulted from the Schwabenland / DOFW some time after the Samum / D-AFAR was already airborne and searching for the I-LAMA. It did reach the accident location when Mario Stoppani was already rescued. The crew of the Samum / D-AFAR gave signals that no further assistance was needed. Captain Blume and his crew continued on to Natal.

Catapult ship Schwabenland / DOFW

 The I-LAMA was constantly in contact with the Schwabenland / DOFW. After learning of the problems the crew assisted Mario Stoppani on his way back. After Mario Stoppani's SOS was heard the Boreas / D-AGAT was launched and the catapult ship left Fernando de Noronha for assistance. In the meantime it assisted the rescue party with presumed positioning reports, radio direction finding signals and wheather forecasts. She arrived at the accident location the next morning where it recovered the Samum / D-AFAR which was still drifting in the ocean.