28 March 1915 – Commander Samson issues standing orders

3 Squadron RNAS took its first flights in the Dardanelles today. Commander Charles Rumney Samson issued standing orders to his pilots with the following key points:

“Pilots always to be armed with a revolver or pistol; to carry binoculars; some safety device, either waistcoat, patent life-belt or petrol can.

Observers always to carry rifle; proper charts for journey (in addition small scale chart of whole Peninsula); binoculars; life-saving device or petrol can; watch if not fitted to the aeroplane.

At all times the pilot should carry out independent observations and note down what he sees {noting the times). Nail a pad of paper on the instrument board for this purpose. Particular attention being paid to shipping in the straits.

Pilots and observers are to familiarise themselves with the photographs of Turkish men-of-war described in ‘ The World’s Fighting Ships – This book is in the office.

On the return from a flight, pilot and observer to immediately report to me, or, in my absence, to the senior officer present. The observer is to telephone the important part of his report to Headquarters and then make out his report. The report is to be made out immediately after the return from a flight.

Don’t make wild statements. . . A small accurate report is worth pages of rhetoric giving no real information.

If an enemy aeroplane is sighted, attack it, reporting you are doing so, if spotting.

Don’t try to do what is termed by some people as ‘Stunt Flying’. This is not wanted for war and is not conduct required of an officer.”

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