A German flying boat shot down in 1943 and not discovered until 1982

Irakleia: the submerged remains of a plane shot down in World War II

During World War II, Greece was invaded by the Italians and the Germans, becoming a complicated theater of operations due to its many islands.

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One of the aircraft that allowed the Germans to operate in this complicated scenario without the need to build airfields was the Arado Ar-196 seaplane, operated by the Luftwaffe and the Kriegsmarine and of which more were built of 500 units, one of which was captured and later reused by the Greek Navy in April 1941.

A Luftwaffe Arado Ar-196 flying boat in 1940.

One of these seaplanes was shot down by a British plane in 1943 in Alimias Bay, on the island of Iraklia, located in the Aegean Sea. The plane spent almost four decades under water until in 1982 it was discovered by a local fisherman when he was collecting his nets. The remains of the plane are 91 meters deep. The channel SailingDreams Paloma has published a video in which a couple of scuba divers explore what remains of the plane:

You can see some screenshots of the video here. Here we see the remains of the cockpit:

The tail of the plane, or rather what remains of it.

This jumble of iron was the fuselage. Under it we can see the structure of the wings.

The remains have become home to several species of fish, as can be seen in the video.

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