Colombo raid 5/4/42

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Jordi Comas
Posts: 196
Joined: Sun Jul 28, 2019 5:21 pm

Colombo raid 5/4/42

Post by Jordi Comas » Sun Mar 22, 2020 1:40 pm

Hi all,

Do you know what merchant ships were at Colombo harbor at time of Japanese attack on 5/4/42?

There were 21 merchants and 8 auxiliaries (Lucia and Hector not included).

Just I have:

Norwegian: Soli, Fingal
British: Benledi, British Sergeant, Clan Murdoch

Thank you very much
Rob Stuart
Posts: 1
Joined: Mon Jun 29, 2020 9:24 pm

Re: Colombo raid 5/4/42

Post by Rob Stuart » Tue Jun 30, 2020 9:14 pm


Fingal was not at Colombo on 5 April. It was at Tuticorin from 1 to 6 April.

I have identified 12 merchantmen present at Colombo on 5 April:

San Cirilo
British Judge
Clan Murdoch
British Sergeant
Cornish City

Storanger and Soli were Norwegian, Tjibadak was Dutch and the rest were British.

In addition, two ships were strafed in the approaches to Colombo during the attack. One was Vardaas (Norwegian), which was sailing into Colombo, so it was probably not one of the 21 ships counted by Arbuthnot. Seawall (UK? Panama?) was probably departing from Colombo, so it may have been one of the 21 counted by Arbuthnot. When it was strafed Seawall was 30 miles from the entrance buoy. It was slightly damaged and three crew members were wounded.

I have also identified 36 ships which were probably present on 4 April and another two which were possibly present then, but I don't know which of them were sent away on the evening of 4 April and which were still present during the attack the next morning.

FYI, I am currently writing an article about this which should eventually be posted at
Jordi Comas
Posts: 196
Joined: Sun Jul 28, 2019 5:21 pm

Re: Colombo raid 5/4/42

Post by Jordi Comas » Thu Jul 02, 2020 6:24 pm

Thank you very much,

My list is the following but I don't know if it's right:

These ships were in the harbour or near Colombo around that date: I don't have sources to know their TROM

Benledi -5.943 GRT/30-
Benrinnes -6.638 GRT/21-
Cornish City -4.952 GRT/36-
Clan Mactavish -7.631 GRT/21-
Clan Murdoch -5.950 GRT/19-
Donorch -5.186 GRT/39-
Empire Moonrise -6.854 GRT/41-
Forthbank -5.057 GRT/29-
Gogra -5.190 GRT/19-
Pardo -5.400 GRT/40-
Sinnington Court -6.910 GRT/28-
Stanmore -4.970 GRT/40-
Uffington Court -4.976 GRT/29-
Alabaman -7.004 GRT/21- (USA)
Sönnavind -4.965 GRT/35- (NOR)

Empress of Japan -26.032 GRT/30-
Danmark -8.391 GRT/25-

British Colonel -6.999 GRT/21-
British Sergeant -5.868 GRT/22-
Valldemosa -7.222 GRT/35-
Trocas -7.406 GRT/27

Perhaps the ones not listed in your list are here

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