On 9th October 1943, Supermarine Spitfire V BM144 PK-O crash landed wheels up near Bangor, Co. Down. While on a routine training flight, pilot Sergeant Kazimierz Lojek (P/733144) of R.A.F. 315 (City of Deblin) Squadron force landed after the plane sustained engine trouble.
At the time R.A.F. 315 (City of Deblin) Squadron was at Ballyhalbert Airfield, Co. Down. Polish airman Lojek walked away from the damaged plane with only minor injuries.
Supermarine Spitfire V BM144 had spent most of its Second World War with Polish squadrons in the Royal Air Force. It joined R.A.F. 303 (Kościuszko) Squadron on 30th March 1942 as RF-D. The “Donald Duck” Spitfire was one of three fighters flown by ace Commander Jan Zumbach during his time with the famous Polish squadron. He scored at least one of his twelve victories in the Spitfire.
Zygmunt Bieńkowski later took Supermarine Spitfire V BM144 at his personal plane, while serving in R.A.F. 303 Squadron. Flying Officer Antoni “Toni” Głowacki also flew BM144 while the squadron was at R.A.F. Kirton-in-Lindsey, Lincolnshire, England.
On 1st June 1943, BM144 transferred to R.A.F. 315 (City of Deblin) Squadron. During this time, it sustained category CA damage. This meant the Royal Air Force carried out repairs on site but the plane was then placed in use for instruction and training.