Bale Out vs. Bail Out

Carter Rila elcutachero at YAHOO.COM
Fri Jan 30 00:31:16 UTC 2009

Bail out to me refers to the emptying of a swamped life raft using a folding bucket included in the OVM. More generally any use of a bucket to get rid of excess water.
On the other hand bale out is the dropping of supplies from aircraft to sustain those below. The first use I am aware of was during great floods such as that of the Great Ohio Flood of 1937 which inundated downtown Pittsburgh. And the air dropping of bales of hay to stranded cattle in the great winter storms of the thirties in the prairie states..
In a militarily specific context air crews dropped supplies in Burma to the Chindit Expedition which operated behind Japanese lines in 1943. The US Army Quartermaster Corps personnel served as "kickers" shoving bales of food, clothing, and ammunition out the door of the C46s and C47s to the troops. These unique individuals who usually served in rear echelon combat service roles were awarded the US Army Air Corps Air Medal awarded for flights over enemy territory. The MPs often challenged them when on pass in Calcutta.
Carter Rila, el Cutachero

The American Dialect Society -

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