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SHIPS SUNK NETHERLANDS 28 - DUTCH SHIPS LOST/DAMAGED/CAPTURED

6)BENAKAT U-197




Photo.  www.photoship.co.uk


 


Built 1935


Tonnage:  2,665 / 4,763 tons


Cargo. Ballast


Route: Capetown (8 May) - Baltimore 


Sunk  20/May/43  by U-197 on pos. 06º05"S 12º56"W


0 Dead


34 Survivors


The Benakat (Master C.J. Grootes) left Capetown in a coastal convoy which was formed in the Table Bay, but left after three days to continue her voyage on the prescribed route to the destination. On 14 May, 1943 the Admiralty radioed a new course. At 07.28 hours on 20 May she was struck by a torpedo from U-197 on the starboard side, just before the bridge. The explosion caused very heavy damage, wrecked the starboard lifeboat and destroyed the starboard machinegun-platform, injuring the first and fourth mate (not seriously). After the hit no electric power was left, so the distress signal could only be send a few times.


The ship began to list to starboard, and with some difficulty the crew succeeded in boarding the three remaining lifeboats and rowed away. About 20 minutes later a second torpedo hit the Benakat on the starboard side and broke her in two. The bow section sank and the stern remained afloat. The U-boat surfaced and fired with the deck gun at the port side of the vessel until the stern sank.


By www.uboat.net


Survivors in one lifeboat went ashore in Ascension Is. and were treated at the 175º Station Hospital and the remaining were rescued on 7 July after 17 days adrift by the British Armed Merchant Cruiser HMS Corfu and landed them at West Africa. 


 

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