Requisitioned Auxiliary – Thorshovdi

Thorshovdi - Narve Sorensen

Thorshovdi - Narve Sorensen


Built by: Deutsche Werft, Hamburg   Completed: 1937

Owner: A/S Odd, Sandefjord

Tonnage: 9944 grt, 5889 nett, 14,710 dwt

Length:  492.9 feet

Beam: 66.1 feet

Draught: 36.4 feet

Machinery: 6 cylinder MAN diesel

In Admiralty Service (Royal Fleet Auxiliary) from 1940

At the beginning of August 1943 the ship was at Gibraltar.  On the 3 August orders were received for the ship to move from the Admiralty harbour to another anchorage, until it was time for her to sail.  By the evening of the 3 August she had been moved to an anchorage on the West side of the bay, about half a mile from the Spanish shore.
Whilst this was happening, 3 human torpedoes had been launched from the Italian ship Olterra, berthed in Algeciras harbour, one of these human torpedoes managed to attach a limpet mine to the hull of the Thorshovdi, which detonated at 04:10 hrs the next morning.

The explosion blew fuel oil into the air and the ship started to settle by the middle, around No 6 centre tank, very loud creaking could be heard, and it was feared that the ship would break in two, so orders were given to abandon ship.

Later that morning the crew were taken back o the ship by a naval tug and Thorshovdi was towed to the Gibraltar side of the bay and anchored in shallow water..

There were no casualties amongst the 38 Norwegian, 1 Danish and 1 British seamen.