British Motor merchant
|Completed||1931 - A. Stephen & Sons Ltd, Linthouse, Glasgow|
|Owner||New Zealand Shipping Co Ltd, London|
|Date of attack||6 Feb 1942||Nationality: British|
|Fate||Sunk by U-106 (Hermann Rasch)|
|Position||38° 21'N, 61° 13'W - Grid CB 5682|
|Complement||71 (56 dead and 15 survivors).|
|Route||Lyttelton - Cristobal - Halifax - UK|
|Cargo||8575 tons of refrigerated foodstuffs, general cargo and 3000 tons of lead|
|History||Completed in April 1931. On 23 Jun 1931, the Opawa, on her maiden voyage from Liverpool to Auckland, took the British steam merchant City of Kimberley in tow which had lost her propeller near the Cook Islands and arrived at Auckland on 2 July. On 6 Jul 1940, requisitioned by the Admiralty as troop transport but returned to the owner after serving four months as cargo transport. On 14 Jan 1941, the Opawa was damaged by near misses during an air raid on Avonmouth. |
|Notes on event|
At 12.10 hours on 6 Feb 1942 the unescorted Opawa (Master Wilfred George Evans) was hit amidships by one torpedo from U-106 about 400 miles north-northeast of Bermuda. The ship had been chased since 08.32 hours and stopped after the hit. The U-boat dived to get closer and observed the launching of four lifeboats. At 14.17 hours, U-106 surfaced and shelled the ship with 93 rounds until she sank at 14.59 hours. However, 54 crew members and two gunners were lost. The master and 14 crew members were picked up by the Dutch steam merchant Hercules and landed at New York.
|On board||We have details of 59 people who were on board.|
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