Ships hit by U-boats


Dutch Motor merchant

Photo courtesy of Alex Duncan

Type:Motor merchant
Tonnage6,189 tons
Completed1926 - Scott´s Shipbuilding & Engineering Co Ltd, Greenock 
OwnerNederlandsche Stoomvaart Mij ´Oceaan´, Amsterdam 
Date of attack16 Aug 1940Nationality:      Dutch
FateDamaged by U-46 (Engelbert Endrass)
Position57° 16'N, 17° 02'W - Grid AL 0312
Complement? men (0 dead and ? survivors).
RouteSwansea - Liverpool (12 Aug) - Capetown - Java 
CargoGeneral cargo 
History Completed in February 1926

At 24.00 hours on 11 Apr 1941, U-124 (Schulz) fired one G7e torpedo from a distance of 2500 meters at the zigzagging and unescorted Alcinous (Master Jakob Kool) about 110 miles southwest of Freetown in 07°17N/14°29W. She was en route from Java to the UK via Capetown and Freetown and armed with one 4in and one machine gun. The torpedo passed from starboard to port ahead of the ship, which tried to escape at full speed and reported the attack by wireless. While chasing this ship, the U-boat then spotted another one and tried to get into an attack position, but was sighted by the Shillong which turned away at full speed and also sent a warning signal. Eventually both ships escaped.

1950 sold to Britain and renamed Phemius for Ocean SS Co (Alfred Holt & Co), Liverpool. Broken up in Hong Kong in July 1957. 
Notes on event

At 13.02 hours on 16 Aug 1940, U-46 fired three torpedoes on three ships (two passenger ships and one freighter) which partially overlapped in convoy OB-197 about 150 miles southwest of Rockall and observed a hit on the freighter, which was clearly damaged, as the bow was deeper in the water. The Alcinous was hit on the port side by one torpedo and caught fire, which could be extinguished after long work. HMS Rochester (L 50) (Cdr G.F. Renwick, RN) supported the damaged ship, which was later towed to Gourock by a British tug. The ship was reparied and returned to service. Endrass could not identify his victim, but U-30 (Lemp) had heard the distress signals from the Alcinous.

On boardWe have details of 10 people who were on board

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