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Manager: Peder Smedvig, Stavanger
Built at Hardinxveld, Holland in 1908. Previous names: Haaland and Friesland. The external website that I've linked to above has more details on her history.
Captain: Otto Sigurd Hansen
Her voyages are listed on this original document received from the National Archives of Norway.
According to A. Hague, Hundvaag took part in the Norway-U.K. Convoy HN 12 in the middle of Febr.-1940. He says she returned to Norway at the end of that month with Convoy ON 16, and on March 18, we find her, with general cargo for Hull, in the original Advance Sailing Telegram for Convoy HN 20 from Norway to the U.K. Follow the links for more info; several Norwegian ships took part. HN 20 arrived Methil on March 22, and according to Arnold Hague, Hundvaag now joined Convoy FS 128, which left Tyne on March 24 and arrived Southend on the 26th (external link - incomplete listing. Keret, Ledaal, Nordhav I, Orania, Sitona and Skum are also named; in fact, most of these had arrived U.K. from Norway in Convoy HN 20).
On the Norwegian version of my Warsailor Stories section I've included the story of someone who served on this ship, Sverre Skjæveland. He says that when Norway was invaded on Apr. 9-1940 they were at Methil with a cargo meant for Stavanger, Norway, but at the news of the invasion they were ordered to take the cargo to Rouen, France. She continued to Boston (Linc.) to pick up a cargo of coal for Boulogne, and from there she went to Goole. The intention was to load another cargo but upon entering the dock there a large hole was knocked into her side and she had to go to Hull for repairs which took 3 months - as can be seen when going to the archive document, she did not leave Hull again until Aug. 28, having arrived on May 27.
She subsequently made 4 voyages between Immingham and Gt. Yarmouth, then loaded a cargo of 760 tons of coal for Dover. Departed Immingham on Oct. 23, then anchored up in Hawk Roads inside Spurn. She left again on Oct. 25 and joined a convoy, arriving Southend in the afternoon of Oct. 26. Departed alone at 13:15 on Nov. 1, and after having passed Nore Lightship an hour later a swarm of German Stuka bombers came over. Bombs fell all around her, but she was not hit. However, a small British steamer sailing nearby received 3 direct hits and went down in seconds. After the aircraft had disappeared about 15 minutes later, Hundvaag turned around, launched a boat and picked up 6 men from the water (1 of whom was dead?). They were later transferred to a patrol vessel and Hundvaag continued her voyage south.
At 19:50 that evening Hundvaag struck a mine*, 2 cable lengths west of the South Goodwin buoy off Dover. The explosion occurred in the port side of the foreship, sending the forward hatch up in the air with coal flying around them. Able Seaman Husebø, who was on lookout duty, was thrown overboard along with misc. items (he was later picked up from the water by the lifeboat). The ship listed to starboard before going down in 5 minutes, with the propeller still rotating in the air. All on board, except for Stoker Sigurd Moen who could not be found, were able to get in the starboard lifeboat and made it to Dover in about 2 hours, where they were given lodgings for the night, and a "sixpence" cap each before they were sent on their way to London the next day. The maritime hearings were held there on Nov. 8 with the captain, the 1st mate, Able Seaman Warhus, the 1st engineer, Stoker Johnsen, and Stoker Thomassen appearing. Stoker Moen had last been seen standing on the top grating inside the door to the engine room on his way to his watch, and it was believed he may have fallen down into the room and possibly knocked unconscious.
"Nortraships flåte" has included a statement from Leutenant Øivind Schau in Dover (MTB 5) who was told that a lifeboat full of people had been seen outside the breakwater, drifting past at great speed because of the strong northeasterly winds and heavy seas. A tug had gone out to get them. Schau was picked up by a "Wren" who drove very fast because of an air attack taking place. The survivors were landed at the Submarine basin. The lookout had been thrown high into the air and landed on his back. Dover's consul took care of them the next day.
According to a visitor to my website, "Shipwreck Index of the British Isles" gives position as 51 08 41N 01 27 55E. "Dive Kent", p85 (223) says mined 1-2 cables W of No.1 buoy, which was formerly the S Goodwins Light Vessel. One man killed, the other 14 and the pilot were saved.
Back to Hundvaag on the "Ships starting with H" page.
The text on this page was compiled with the help of: "Nortraships flåte", J. R. Hegland, "Sjøforklaringer fra 2. verdenskrig", Norwegian Maritime Museum, Volume I, and misc. (ref. My sources).