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Wreck of a 1944 Royal Navy vessel found

The wreck of the British Royal Navy vessel ‘Empire World’ has been found 74 years after it sank. Thanks to this it was possible to learn the fate of the vessel and 16 crew members who disappeared in mysterious circumstances during a rescue mission off the coast of Iceland. The mixed crew of the Roy
Published: May 23, 2018 - 13:19
Updated: July 22, 2023 - 16:48
Wreck of a 1944 Royal Navy vessel found

The wreck of the British Royal Navy vessel ‘Empire World’ has been found 74 years after it sank. Thanks to this it was possible to learn the fate of the vessel and 16 crew members who disappeared in mysterious circumstances during a rescue mission off the coast of Iceland.

The mixed crew of the Roy Navy and the British Merchant Navy, was sent aboard the Sunderland-built vessel “Empire World” to Iceland to support convoys crossing the Atlantic or sailing to the USSR.

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Krokur

On 10 November 1944 powerful storms hit the coast of Iceland. The extremely difficult conditions forced the convoy, coming from Loch Ewe in Scotland, to disperse. However, this was not the only threat to the Allies.

The German submarine U-300 decided to use the opportunity and targeted the tanker “Shirvan”. The ship was attacked and sunk about 30 NM south-west of the Icelandic capital Reykjavik.

Steering

The surviving crew members were picked up by the Icelandic ship “Godafoss”, but it too fell victim to a German U-boat. Hit by a Kriegsmarine unit, the Icelandic ship sank in just 4 minutes.

The Royal Navy military cutter “Empire World” was also sent to the last known position of the tanker “Shirvan”. However, it never reached the place. Some historians suspect that the vessel was another victim of the German submariners of U-300, but this supposition was denied by the surviving members of the German crew, after their ship was sunk in Gibraltar in February 1945.

The wreck of the ‘Empire World’ has been found by the Icelandic Coast Guard. Exploration of the sunken vessel made it possible to establish its identity and also to determine the absence of any signs of explosion. Thus the testimony of the German crew, who denied having anything to do with the sinking of the British vessel, was confirmed.

Source: royalnavy.mod.uk

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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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