Tuesday, 20 February 2024
-- Advertisement --
Liberty Club Level3 Divers24

SS Express – a group of British technical divers have identified a shipwreck from 1918

Published: September 1, 2023 - 10:47
Updated: September 1, 2023 - 10:48
SS Express – a group of British technical divers have identified a shipwreck from 1918

On Scapa Flow, technical divers surveying wrecks off the coast of Orkney have identified the wreck of the 1918 ship SS Express.

The group of experienced technical divers who recently reported on the discovery of the wreck of the Royal Navy landing craft tank (LCT) have once again made the headlines in the UK media. This time with the identification of the wreck of the cargo ship SS Express, which sank in a maritime collision.

Diver on the wreck of the SS Express
Diver on the wrecksite Photo: Rick Ayrton

Last voyage

The SS Express sank on 9th February 1918 north of Scapa Flow after a collision with another ship. The British cargo vessel was at that time sailing from Leith (a district of Edinburgh since 1920) to Kirkwall in Orkney. Unfortunately, almost at the end of her journey, a collision occurred with the Royal Navy destroyer HMS Grenville.

The tragedy, which took place off the coast of Pentland Skerries, claimed the lives of 13 people, 11 members of the crew and two passengers. Following the collision, the SS Express was so badly damaged that the ship broke in two and sank.

The discovery

The British divers were very excited about the discovery. Speaking to BBC radio, they reported that the whole expedition that led to the identification of the ship took a lot of preparation.

Wreck of a Brtitish cargo ship
SS Express is one of the many wrecks at Scapa Flow Photo: Rick Ayrton

 

They also stated that they were very happy because they had managed to bring some closure to a tragic story that had a huge impact on the local community. After all, the crew of the ship were mostly local men. The identification of the wreck was something very important for their families.

The thing about diving in these areas north of Scapa Flow is the water clarity improves dramatically. With our modern torches we can bring back some fantastic images of these lost ships – said Rick Ayrton.

 

Historical photo of SS Express
Historical photo of the ship

SS Express

The ship was built in 1881 at the Scottish shipyard Seath T. B. & Co. in Glasgow. At the time, as SS Hebridean, she was part of the fleet of Hendry, Mccallum Co. – Glasgow Steam Coasters Co. In 1917 the vessel was bought by Cooper W. & Son, from Kirkwall, and renamed to SS Express.

The iron-hulled vessel was 42.6m long and 7.2m wide. The ship was powered by a single two-cylinder steam engine, fed by one boiler, which provided the vessel with a power of 70 n.p.h.

Head photo: Rick Ayrton

Other posts
Share:
Facebook
Telegram
LinkedIn
Twitter
Pinterest
WhatsApp

About author

Tomasz Andrukajtis
Editor-in-chief of the DIVERS24 portal and magazine. Responsible for obtaining, translating and developing content. He also supervises all publications. Achived his first diving certification – P1 CMAS, in 2000. Has a degree in journalism and social communication. In the diving industry since 2008.
-- Advertisement --
technical diver tuna hastberg mine
-- Advertisement --
Level3 Club CCR Divers24
Recent post
Brett Hemphill’s body has been recovered from the Phantom Springs
Barotrauma – Diving Accidents and Consequences
Żibel Studio – The NGO with the Solution for the recycling of Ocean Plastics
Indian Celebrities Sonakshi Sinha and Zaheer Iqbal Team Up with PADI
Halcyon Launches New Warehouse Center in Poland
Science Under Ice: Polar Research Diving Courses
Żibel’s Environmental Triumphs in 2023
You haven't read yet
Barotrauma – Diving Accidents and Consequences
Żibel Studio – The NGO with the Solution for the recycling of Ocean Plastics
Indian Celebrities Sonakshi Sinha and Zaheer Iqbal Team Up with PADI
Halcyon Launches New Warehouse Center in Poland
Science Under Ice: Polar Research Diving Courses
Żibel’s Environmental Triumphs in 2023

Search...

The Divers24 portal is currently the largest online medium treating diving in Poland. Since 2010 we have been providing interesting and important information from Poland and around the world on all forms of diving and related activities.

Contact us: info@divers24.com