Ships hit by U-boats


British Motor merchant

Photo courtesy of the Allen Collection

Type:Motor merchant
Tonnage5,529 tons
Completed1939 - A. Stephen & Sons Ltd, Linthouse, Glasgow 
OwnerP. & O. Steam Navigation Co Ltd, London 
Date of attack6 May 1941Nationality:      British
FateSunk by U-103 (Viktor Schütze)
Position8° 23'N, 15° 13'W - Grid ET 2954
Complement65 (4 dead and 61 survivors).
RouteKarachi - Capetown - UK 
Cargo2500 tons of pig iron, 5700 tons of peas and rape seed 
History Completed in December 1938 
Notes on event

At 05.15 hours on 6 May 1941 the unescorted Surat (Master Thomas Edward Daniel) was hit by a stern torpedo from U-103 northwest of Freetown. The U-boat had spotted the ship, en route with 13 knots, at 16.03 hours the day before and only could keep up with her due to her zigzag course that also caused a first torpedo fired at 23.45 hours to miss. The crew apparently noticed the attack and evaded two torpedoes fired at 05.10 hours and a first stern torpedo five minutes later. The second stern torpedo fired shortly afterwards then hit the stern and stopped the ship, but also a first coup de grâce at 05.26 hours missed. The ship sank immediately after being hit amidships by two coups de grâce at 06.13 and 06.25 hours. Four crew members were lost. The master, 58 crew members and two gunners were picked up by the British hopper barge Foremost 102 and landed at Freetown.

On boardWe have details of 4 people who were on board

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