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Owner: Skibs-A/S Sitona
Sitona was a steel hulled steamship registered in Fredrikstad. She had dimensions measuring: 69.01m length, an 11.10m beam and a draught of 4.80-metres. Built by A/S Moss Værft in 1920 (Yard No 35), launched in March-1921 as Imacos for Bechs Rederi A/S, Tvedestrand, Norway (C. Bech & Co. managers). Her single, probably iron screw propeller was powered by a 3-cylinder triple expansion steam engine that developed 97nhp using one boiler. Her cylinder diameters measured: 16in., 25in. & 42in with a 30-inch stroke, (40.64cm, 63.50cm & 106.68cm with a 66.20cm-stroke). A/S Moss Værft built her machinery. She was fitted with electric lights, had one deck, water ballast, a 41-ton poop and 75-ton hatches. Purchased by A/S Sitona in 1931 and renamed Sitona.
Captain: Albert Torleif Arntzen
Please compare the above voyages with Arnold Hague's Voyage Record below.
(Received from Don Kindell - His source: The late Arnold Hague's database).
Follow the convoy links provided for more information on each.
Errors may exist, and several voyages are missing.
A. Hague has included Sitona in Convoy HN 8 from Norway to the U.K. in Jan.-1940. The following month he has her in the U.K.-Norway Convoy ON 15, and in March we find her in the original Advance Sailing Telegram for Convoy HN 20 from Norway to the U.K., general cargo for London. All these convoys had several Norwegian ships, as will be seen when following the links.
She was subsequently in service around the U.K. - See the archive documents and Voyage Record above; Page 1 and Page 2 show her 1940 movements. Her 1941 movements also start on the latter document, while Page 3 has the rest.
Sitona had departed Blyth on May 2-1941 with a cargo of about 1600 tons coal for Deadman's Dock, London, joining Convoy FS 479 (external link - incomplete listing). The following evening German aircraft attacked the convoy and Sitona was hit by a torpedo* which passed through the engine room from the port side and out through the starboard side before detonating in the sea. The torpedo left a hole on the port side, estimated to be about 1' in diameter right on the waterline, while a hole on the starboard side of about 2' in diameter was about 2' above the waterline. The engine was partly destroyed and no maneuvers could be carried out. Water penetrated into the engine room and boiler room so that the engine stopped immediately, but the people working there managed to get up on deck, while Sitona slowly started to sink.
The forward tackle of the port lifeboat had been blown away, making it impossible to lower the boat, and the raft had been destroyed. The majority of the crew were ordered to the starboard lifeboat, while the captain, the 1st mate, the 2nd engineer and Ordinary Seaman Hervik stayed on board with the intention of trying to get the ship towed out of the fairway. There was a hawser ready on board one of the Naval guardships, but Sitona sank so quickly that nothing could be done. The 4 men left the ship about an hour later and were picked up by the destroyer K 89 (? not sure which destroyer had this No.) which already had all the others on board. By that time the foredeck on the port side was already under water and Sitona had started to develop a list. An hour later (01:15, May 4) an explosion was observed on board Sitona and she sank. The crew were taken by the destroyer to 2 trawlers, one of which brought them into Grimsby on May 4.
("Nortraships flåte" simply states that an escort trawler attempted to tow Sitona out of the channel, but she was given up about an hour after midnight and sank, giving position as 53 12N 01 10E).
The inquiry was held in Newcastle-on-Tyne on May 12-1941 with the captain, the 1st engineer, the 2nd mate (officer on watch), Able Seaman Karlsen (helmsman) and Ordinary Seaman Hervik appearing. The latter was on lookout duty on the roof of the chart room when the attack occurred.
Trajan was also sunk by the German aircraft that day.
Crew List - No casualties:
Back to Sitona on the "Ships starting with S" page.
The SS Sitona was the second such vessel owned by A/S Sitona, the first being an iron 983-ton schooner rigged steamship that was built in three months in 1885 by Wigham Richardsons at Newcastle-upon-Tyne. K. Andersen of Fredrikstad also managed her. Wigham Richardsons built her 2-cylinder compound steam engine that developed 162hp using two single ended boilers, which powered the single bronze screw propeller. (Info from Ron Young). The company also had a Sitona after the war, this was the former Dux.
The text on this page was compiled with the help of: "Nortraships flåte", J. R. Hegland, "Sjøforklaringer fra 2. verdenskrig", Norwegian Maritime Museum, Volume II - (ref. My sources). Pre war history was received from Ron Young, England, who has written several books on shipwrecks.