Ships hit by U-boats

Henry B. Plant

American Steam merchant

NameHenry B. Plant
Type:Steam merchant (Liberty)
Tonnage7,240 tons
Completed1944 - St. John’s River Shipbuilding Co, Jacksonville FL 
OwnerA.L. Burbank & Co Ltd, New York 
Date of attack5 Feb 1945Nationality:      American
FateSunk by U-245 (Friedrich Schumann-Hindenberg)
Position51° 19'N, 1° 42'E - Grid AN 7960
Complement70 (16 dead and 54 survivors).
RouteNew York (5 Jan) - Liverpool - Margate Roads (5 Feb) - Antwerp 
Cargo9300 tons of engineers materials, including iron landing strips, sewer pipes, acids, oils and mechanized equipment 
History Completed December 1944 
Notes on event

At 20.25 hours on 5 Feb 1945 the Henry B. Plant (Master Charles James Ward) as last ship in the starboard column of convoy TAM-71 was torpedoed by U-245 about 17 miles east of Ramsgate. The lookouts had spotted the U-boat 300 yards off the starboard side, but it was too late to evade the torpedo which struck at the #4 hold. The explosion ruptured the main deck, severed steam lines, blasted the hatches and beams overboard and probably set off the after magazines. The engines were secured as the vessel rapidly sank, sinking stern first within five minutes. Most of the eight officers, 33 crew members, 28 armed guards (the ship was armed with one 5in, one 3in and eight 20mm guns) and one passenger (an Army security officer) had to jump overboard, they only managed to launch one lifeboat and four rafts. The survivors were picked up by HMS Hazard (N 02) and HMS Sir Lancelot (T 228) and landed in England. One officer, eight crew members and seven armed guards drowned.

On 5 Jan 1945 the Henry B. Plant had left New York in convoy HX-331 on her maiden voyage for Liverpool, arriving on 22 January.

On boardWe have details of 17 people who were on board

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