Airplane Douglas A-20 (Boston, Heavok) US bomber in the Gulf of Riga

Diving on a Douglas US WW2 aircraft

How did the US plane - bomber Douglas A20 get into the Baltic Sea, the Gulf of Riga?

The American bomber Douglas A-20 (also "Boston", "Heavok") is one of the famous series of aircraft that the United States lent to the Red Army to fight fascism at the end of World War II. Douglas A-20 aircraft were used by Soviet pilots as bombers and aerial reconnaissance aircraft. The Douglas A-20 aircraft, a US military aid, played a particularly large role in naval aviation, where aircraft were used to drop torpedo-mines at enemy ships from a height. The US government supplied 3,128 different modifications of the Douglas A-20 to the Red Army.

Douglas A-20 aircraft technical data

  • The plane fell into the Gulf of Riga on November 27, 1943
  • Two Wright R-2600-7 Double Cyclone air-cooled, radial engines with turbochargers, 1700 hp each
  • Width 18.69 m
  • Length 14.63 m
  • Height 4.80 m
  • Wing area 43.10 m²

History of the Douglas A-20

  • The plane was found with the help of side-view sonar in the Gulf of Riga in 2008, following information about torn nets marked on fishermen's maps.
  • The pilot's tablet was highlighted, which contained flight route maps, chocolate, a letter, and the name of the Red Army, Russian pilot - Letunovskiy Petr Vasilievich was obtained.
  • The German army reported “1943. on November 27, the plane "Douglas A-20” attacked a German army ship “Robert Muller” at Lighthouses of Uzhava. The plane dropped a torpedo that exploded 20 meters from the ship's side. The aircraft opened machine gun fire and headed east. The plane crash in the Gulf of Riga near Vecākai was observed by planes of the 1st Air Fleet of the German Army. Two officers and a sergeant were taken prisoner."
  • 1942-1944 German rear admiral Böhmer was in command in 2008, who led all naval operations of the German fleet against the Baltic fleet of the Red Army. It appeared from Boehmer's report that Douglas A-20 the crew of the plane that fell into the sea near Vecākai on that day, November 27, 1943, survived and were taken prisoner.

Diving on a Douglas US WW2 aircraft

Wreck of the Douglas A-20 plane in the Gulf of Riga

  • The wreckage of the plane is located at a depth of 20 meters, eight kilometers from Vecāki. It is located 15 minutes away from the yacht club "Auda" by "RIB" boat.
  • The tail of the plane is broken, located approximately 100 meters from the wreckage.
  • The bottom of the sea is sandy, sea crabs and fish moved on it.
  • The cables in the wings of the plane are cut, this indicates an attempt to lift the plane out of the sea, however, to the divers' delight, it did not succeed.
US military plane Douglas A-20
US military plane Douglas A-20

Diving on a Douglas A-20 airplane, in the Gulf of Riga

  • The sunken airplane "Douglas A-20" is located at a depth of 20 meters, it is an airplane with a broken tail, which is located approximately 100 meters from the hull and rests on the sandy bottom of the sea.
  • A lot of different fish usually live on the wrecks, they form a beautiful and interesting underwater ecosystem. Diving is useful for researchers of various Baltic Sea fish and history buffs!
  • Diving to the wreck sunken in the Gulf of Riga takes place in the summer, in good weather conditions. It is mandatory to apply in advance.

  • Visible distance in water 1-3 meters, to see the wreck, it is necessary to use an underwater light.
  • The water temperature in summer, in the month of July, is 18C.
  • A diver's certificate is required to dive on an aircraft "Advanced Open Water Diver”, instructor preparation in the course “Wreck diver“, instruction and supervision in diving.
  • Diving to several historical wrecks in the Baltic Sea, WW2 viewing takes place every summer.
    Coordinates: yacht club "Auda" (RIB boat pier)
    Apply for diving on ships in the Baltic Sea - Tel/WhatsApp 220-77-202 or

Learn more about wreck diving in the Baltic Sea