Sjøforklaring 1939 - 1945

Informasjonen nedenfor vedr. skip i Nortraships flåte er direkte avskrift av orginalkilden "Sjøforklaringer fra andre verdenskrig (1940 - 1945)". Informasjonen her er fra sjøforklaringer holdt under og rett etter krigen og kan derfor avvike noe fra den øvrige kvalitetssikrede informasjonen i Krigsseilerregisteret.

Dato
6. mars 1942
Posisjon
31g 00m N, 67g 40m V
Årsak
Torpedert [av italiensk ubåt]
Last
Te, gummi
Reiserute
Trinidad - New York
Mannskapsliste
Komplett
Reddet
33
Fanget
0
Omkommet
0 [0]
Savnet
0
  • Referat

    Dato
    20. mars 1942
    Sted
    Port-au-Prince, Haiti
    Administrator
    Honorær konsul Leif Frøen
    Merknad
    Ifølge sjøforklaringen en savnet - ikke nevnt i mannskapslisten

    ...

    Captain Storm Jørgensen appeared ...

    The complement consisted of 33 men before the torpedoing. The "Tønsbergfjord" departed from Colombo via Capetown to Trinidad, with a cargo consisting of TEA and RUBBER bound for New York. On her departure the ship was in every respect in a wholly seaworthy condition. The captain was as could be expected under the circumstance unable to produce the logbook of the ship. The master declared further: that on March 6, 1942 at 10.15 p.m. the ship was hit by a torpedo which struck the after ship. The ship's engines stopped immediately and all lights went out. The captain was in bed at the time when the torpedo struck, and when reaching the bridge he found the whole crew occupied launching the two lifeboats. Apparently all cabins and corridors were filled with gas immediately after the explosion, which made breathing difficult. The gas was of such a disagreeable nature that it reduced to a certain extent the ability to get out of the cabin. The weather was overcast and with a heavy sea. Our position was at that moment 31o00'N 66o40'W. The lifeboats were successfully launched and were pulled away from the sinking ship. A submarine appeared on the surface heading right at one of the lifeboats, but cleared and started shelling "Tønsbergfjord" with approximately 10 rounds, and sunk the ship by gunfire. Approximate time from the torpedo attack and until the ship disappeared was about 10 minutes. The lifeboats contacted each other and by counting the men we found that one man who had been on duty in the engine room was missing. None of the men had been injured. The captain who had left the ship in the port lifeboat, shifted over to the starboard one. Before the lifeboats separated we agreed to keep southwest trying to make Florida. Both lifeboats had pilot charts and also the position at the time of the torpedoing. In order to salvage some extra food and water we waited until daylight, and spotted one of the rafts and picked up some provisions and also water. We proceeded then Soutwest. We were picked up by the Dutch steamer "Telamon" on Friday, March 13 A.M., and were brought to the town of Jeremie in the Republic of Haiti, where we landed on March 16. Here all men passed the doctor, and none were found sick, except minor skin scratches.

    ...

    Thereupon appeared FIRST WITNESS Mr. Per Wathne, Second Mate of the M/S "Tønsbergfjord" who deposed that he went to bed approx. at 8 P.M. on March 6th, and that he woke up by the explosion abt. 10.15 PM. He was thrown out of bed and fell on the floor and arose and tried to switch on the light. The motors had almost stopped and the light faded away. He put on his trousers, shoes, jacket and found his flashlight and left the room. The corridors were filled with dense blueish gas, which made him almost unconscious. As soon as he had left the cabin he went right up to the starboard lifeboat which he commanded. When he reached there most of the crew had already arrived and together they swung out the lifeboat and lowered same on the water. The ship had heavy list to port, and it was very difficult to clear the boat from the side of the ship. The lifeboat received a cut when lowering her and probably some damage after they got her on the water, on account of heavy seas which knocked her against the ship's side. He ordered all men into the boat and entered same himself after being certain that no men were left behind. As soon as he came into the boat he ordered to let go, and they drifted alongside the ship and cleared the stern of the vessel. He ordered the men to take to the oars and they rowed away from the ship, beacause he saw the submarine off starboard quarter. Apparently she was not moving then. As soon as he was clear of the vessel he saw the port lifeboat also rowing away from the ship. He communicated with her and the Captain came over to his boat. He gave a line over to the port lifeboat, but same broke off on account of the rough sea, and they drifted apart. At this moment he saw something moving, and he soon recognized that it was the submarine coming for full speed against them. However, the latter turned her rudder and cleared the lifeboat, and when she was just abreast of them, he heard the German commander giving instructions to fire the gun. They shot approximately ten shells at the "Tønsbergfjord". Shortly afterwards a heavy rainsquall came and his the "Tønsbergfjord", which he never saw any more. When he perceived her last she was lying with her starboard side to the wind and with a heavy port list. The Second Mate stated that he has no further observation to make.

    ...

    Thereupon appeared SECOND WITNESS Mr. Georg Kvamsø, Boatswain of the m/v "Tønsbergfjord" who deposed that he was in bed and woke up when the explosion took place. He rushed out of his cabin and up on deck and went straight to the boat deck. They got the lifeboat cleared from the ship, and waited at a distance, and he saw then the submarine which started to shell the "Tønsbergfjord". The vessel disappeared shortly afterwards out of sight. The Boatswain declared that he had no further observation to make.

    ...

    The THIRD WITNESS Mr. Severin Kristian Stockvik, Motorman of the m/s "Tønsbergfjord" appeared and deposed that he was asleep and that he was thrown out of bed when the explosion took place. He found his cabin full of a thick, disagreable gas which made it very difficult for him to breathe. He was called by the other boys and they explained to him that the wooden steps of the ladder leading up the deck had been broken. However, the boatswain used his flashlight and he succeeded in climbing up on deck. At this moment the submarine put her strong searchlight right on the port side of the ship. He ran then over to the starboard lifeboat to which he belonged. He helped in lowering same. He got into the lifeboat together with the other men and they cleared from the "Tønsbergfjord". He saw now the submarine at a distance of about 5 meters manoeuvring arond the stern of the "Tønsbergfjord". He also heard the submarine commander giving orders to fire. The submarine shot 4 or 5 times at the "Tønsbergfjord". Fire started on board the doomed ship after being hit by the 5th shell. She disappeared in smoke and fire. The motorman stated that he had no further observation to make.

    ...