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Greece documents condition of major historic wrecks

The Greek navy – Polemiko Naftiko – is carrying out a project aimed at documenting the country’s most valuable historical shipwrecks. On Wednesday, January 8, it was announced in an official statement that the first phase of activities had been carried out and completed. The survey and documentation creation was carried out by numerous groups
Published: January 9, 2020 - 17:15
Updated: July 22, 2023 - 19:06
Greece documents condition of major historic wrecks

The Greek navy – Polemiko Naftiko – is carrying out a project aimed at documenting the country’s most valuable historical shipwrecks. On Wednesday, January 8, it was announced in an official statement that the first phase of activities had been carried out and completed.

The survey and documentation creation was carried out by numerous groups of divers who focused on wrecks sunk in the waters of the Gulf of Corinth, near Skaramangas, a village located in the Attica region, as well as along the Saronic Gulf and Lakki on the island of Leros.

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Among the wrecks documented was the legendary brig “Aris”, owned by Anastasios Tsamados. The vessel made history by fighting in the War of Greek Independence in 1821, and was later used as a training ship. “Aris” was sunk with full honours during a grand ceremony that took place off the coast of the island of Salamina, on the 100th anniversary of the Greek independence uprising in 1921. Other known wrecks that have also been explored include the destroyers “Hydra” and “Vasilissa Olga”.

The first phase of dives was conducted from early September to mid-November 2019, while the second phase is scheduled for 2020 and will be conducted in collaboration with Underwater Antiquities Ephorate. Before this happens, however, some of the finds that have been examined and historically verified from the video footage collected during the first phase are to be presented.

We also know from the information available that sufficient photographic material has been recovered from the wrecks to create detailed 3D models for future research. The Greek Navy Historical Service also plans to hold a series of historical meetings to present the individual vessels, their heroic actions and the history of the sinking. In this way, the collected documentation can be presented to the general public, so that Greeks can see how important ships and vessels are today, after years spent on the seabed.

The Greeks are to be congratulated on the idea and its implementation, and it is impossible not to mention the situation in our own backyard. The most important wrecks of the Baltic Sea in Polish waters are in a deplorable state. No inspections have been carried out and no proper documentation has been created in the last 15 years, with fatal consequences. The members of the Baltictech group, during a dive organised in cooperation with the National Maritime Museum, among others, found out with their own eyes that the wrecks have been looted and stripped of almost everything. You can read about this and many other issues in the following interview.

Source: greece.greekreporter.com

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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.
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