Re: Sinking of Swedish ELGO
Posted by: Jan-Olof
Date: February 14, 2008 11:15AM
21.6.40 Left Tunis bound for Sfax with 500 tons of general cargo (asphalt etc)
22.6.40 0020 hours, position 3' E of Ras Mhir, the Master was woken up by the third mate who explained that the ship was being fired upon with artillery from a naval vessel which was identified as a submarine of unknown nationality. Approximately 15 shells were fired by the sub. The master ordered the crew into the lifeboats, he and the first mate stayed on board until the boats had been lowered into the sea. When the first mate was about to leave the vessel he observed the wake of a torpedo passing under the ship without detonating. This event took place approximately 30 minutes after the first shell had been fired by the sub. Ten minutes after the first torpedo had been fired and when every crewmember had left, the vessel was hit by a second torpedo. The Elgö immediatly broke in two and sank within five minutes. Several men were wounded when the explosion occured and the port life boat was seriously damaged. Some time during the artillery bombardment, or so it is thought, one member of the crew disappeared, probably hit by splinters, that was the only fatility.
Hope this helps.