Ships hit by U-boats

Empire Toucan

British Steam merchant

Empire Toucan under her former name Freeport Sulphur No 5

NameEmpire Toucan
Type:Steam merchant
Tonnage4,127 tons
Completed1920 - Federal Shipbuilding Co, Kearny NJ 
OwnerSir William Reardon Smith & Sons Ltd, Cardiff 
Date of attack29 Jun 1940Nationality:      British
FateSunk by U-47 (G√ľnther Prien)
Position49° 20'N, 13° 52'W - Grid BE 3821
Complement34 (3 dead and 31 survivors).
RouteGarston - Port Sulphur, Louisiana 
History Completed in April 1920 as American Freeport Sulphur No 5 for Freeport Sulphur Transportation Co Inc, New York. 1939 the sulphur carrier was laid up at Freeport. On 12 Jun 1940 transferred to Britain and renamed Empire Toucan for Ministry of War Transport (MoWT). 
Notes on event

At 05.15 hours on 29 June 1940, U-47 stopped the unescorted Empire Toucan (Master Hywel Tudor Thomas) with the last five rounds of the deck gun about 190 miles southwest of Fastnet, Ireland. At 05.38 hours, the U-boat fired one torpedo that hit aft and broke the ship in two. Prien admired the courage of the radio operator who still sent distress signals even after the torpedo hit. Both radio officers and a greaser were lost. The forepart was later scuttled by gunfire by HMS Hurricane (H 06) (LtCdr H.C. Simms, RN), which picked up the master and 30 crew members and landed them at Plymouth.

On boardWe have details of 4 people who were on board

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