Raid on Saarbrucken (U.S. Army request): 5 October 1944

6308IN 5/6.10.44 // NT 8" 16,000" <- 105° 2229½
SAARBRUCKEN K. 1x 4,000, 14 CP 14x500 26 secs F/O Owen K2 460

SAARBRÜCKEN, 5 October, 1944. 2229½, 17,000ft

Bomb Load, 1 x 4,000lb, 14 x 450lb cluster incendiaries

531 Lancasters and 20 Mosquitoes of 1,3 and 8 groups on the first major RAF raid to this target since September, 1942. 3 Lancasters lost.

The raid was made at the request of the American Third Army which was advancing in this direction; the intention was to cut the railways and block supply routes generally through the town. The bombing was accurate and severe damage was caused in the main town area north of the river Saar, the area through which the main railway lines ran. Damage was particularly severe in the Altstadt and Mullstatt districts. 5,882 houses were destroyed and 1,141 were seriously damaged. 344 people were killed, a figure that suggests that much of the population may have been evacuated from this town, which was situated right on the Siegfried Line.

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