Visit Blackall-Tambo

Qantas Crash Memorial

  • Dawson Developmental Road, Tambo, 4478

Tambo’s Qantas Crash memorial can be found on the northern end of the town’s claypan. 

A little known slice of history and dubious claim to fame, Tambo is the location of the first ever Qantas plane crash.

On Thursday 24 March 1927 the mail plane, piloted by Alan Douglas Davidson was on its regular route between Charleville and Mt Isa via Tambo. In addition to the mail, the plane was carrying two passengers: William Donaldson of Rocklands Station Camooweal and Archibald Bell of Bellmore station, Winton. Tragically, it crashed on the claypan near Tambo. Although it was the first time the experienced pilot had flown the the route, he had flown as a passenger a week earlier. It is believed he mistook a football field for the runway when trying to land and stalled the plane trying to avoid a fence. Two of the men died at the scene of the crash with a third lasting twelve more hours. The men were buried at the Tambo cemetery and the plane was buried where it lay.

More information and relics of the crash can be found on display in Tambo’s Post and Telegraph Buildings.

Location: Tambo