Italian submarine fates
Ships hit by Italian submarines
|Date of attack||12 Dec 1942||Time||0123+|
|Fate||Sunk by submarine Enrico Tazzoli (C.C. Carlo Fecia di Cossato)|
|Position of attack||5° 33'N, 39° 25'W|
|Complement||51 (no casualties, 51 survivors)|
|Notes||At 2008 hours on 11th December, a vessel was sighted at a distance of 18,000 meters. The submarine went on an intercepting course.|
At 0059 hours on the 12th, two bow torpedoes were fired and one hit.
She was the British Empire Hawk (5,590 GRT, built 1919), on passage from New York to Alexandria via Trinidad and Capetown. She was carrying 3,500 tons of coal and 2,200 tons of general cargo. She remained afloat and opened machine gun fire on the submarine.
At 0117 hours, the submarine turned for a stern shot at Empire Hawk. The torpedo had an erratic run and missed.
At 0120 hours, Enrico Tazzoli fired a torpedo from a stern tube and it hit the target but she remained upright.
Enrico Tazzoli turned again, this time for a bow shot at Empire Hawk. This torpedo also had an erratic run and missed.
At 0123 hours, the submarine fired another torpedo from a stern tube, but it had an erratic run and missed.
At the same time, both guns opened fire and, within a short time, Tazzoli fired another torpedo which hit. Gunfire was maintained until 0210 hours, when Empire Hawk finally sank. Thirty-one survivors were picked up by the steamer Cape Breton on the 17th. Twenty survivors, including the Master, reached the Brazilian coast on 25th December. There were no victims.