Ships hit by U-boats


Swedish Motor merchant

Photo courtesy of Sjöhistoriska Museet, Stockholm

Type:Motor merchant
Tonnage6,873 tons
Completed1924 - A/B Götaverken, Gothenburg 
OwnerTrafik-A/B Grängesberg-Oxelösund, Stockholm 
Date of attack18 Jan 1940Nationality:      Swedish
FateSunk by U-25 (Viktor Schütze)
Position59° 05'N, 5° 56'W - Grid AM 3488
Complement35 (0 dead and 35 survivors).
RouteBuenos Aires - Kirkwall - Gothenburg 
Cargo9150 tons of grain and cattle food 
History Completed in October 1924 
Notes on event

At 16.25 hours on 18 Jan 1940 the neutral Pajala (Master A. Ericsson) was hit forward of the bridge by one torpedo from U-25, after the ship had been spotted with an escort in a scurry of snow about 20 minutes earlier. The explosion shattered the bridge and injured the radio operator. Lookouts had observed the U-boat before the attack and the crew immediately abandoned ship in two lifeboats after the hit. At 16.50 hours, a first coup de grâce missed due to the bad visibility, but the second fired at 17.03 hours hit aft and caused the ship to sink quickly by the stern 10 miles 72° from North Rona, Hebrides. The escort observed was the armed boarding vessel HMS Northern Duke (4.11) (Lt R.M. Pattinson, RNR), escorting the ship to Kirkwall for contraband inspection. At 17.26 hours, she forced the U-boat to submerge by gunfire and then attacked with depth charges. They claimed hits on the conning tower and the sinking of the enemy, which in fact escaped undamaged. The survivors were picked up after two hours by the armed trawler and taken to Kirkwall. The destroyers HMS Kimberley (F 50) (LtCdr R.G.K. Knowling, RN) and HMS Ashanti (F 51) (Cdr W.G. Davis, RN) were sent to the area for an anti-submarine sweep, but found nothing except wreckage from the freighter.

On boardWe have details of 1 people who were on board

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