Ships hit by U-boats


Dutch Steam merchant

Photo courtesy of Maritiem Museum, Rotterdam

Type:Steam merchant
Tonnage1,417 tons
Completed1921 - J. & A. Van der Schuyt Scheepswerf & Maschinefabriek, Papendrecht 
OwnerNV Koninklijke Nederlandsche Stoomboot Mij (KNSM), Amsterdam 
Date of attack18 Jun 1942Nationality:      Dutch
FateSunk by U-159 (Helmut Friedrich Witte)
Position11° 55'N, 72° 36'W - Grid EC 8553
Complement37 (1 dead and 36 survivors).
RouteNew Orleans (4 Jun) - Cristobal - Curaçao 
Cargo1470 tons of general cargo 
History Completed in September 1921 
Notes on event

On 13 June 1942 the Flora (Master A. de Haan) picked up the occupants of two lifeboats, they were survivors from Surrey and Ardenvohr and since three days in the lifeboats. Because they did not have enough drinking water on board, she had to go to Cristobal, arriving the next day. After landing the survivors and taking on some additional cargo, she departed for Curaçao.

At 02.45 hours on 18 June, one of the gunners spotted a faint light over the port side and shortly thereafter, U-159 began shelling the vessel, hitting with the first shell. The ship changed course and returned fire unsuccessfully. Shellfire caused a fire, damaged one lifeboat, stopped the engine, destroyed the steering gear and seriously injured the third engineer Van Voorthuisen. The 31 crew members and six passengers quickly abandoned ship in a motorboat and one lifeboat. Witte questioned the survivors and misunderstood the name of the ship as Flomar, an American steam merchant of 5551 grt. The survivors headed for the coast of Colombia, which was about 12 miles away. They landed the next night near La Pajaro, but the injured man already died of wounds and was buried there.

On boardWe have details of 37 people who were on board

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