The sinking of the HMS Curacao

History of Sorts

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Today marks the 77th anniversary of the sinking HMS Curacao and it wasn’t sunk by the Germans or Japanese or other Axis powers but by one of the most famous cruise liners HMS Queen Mary.

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On the morning of 2 October 1942, Curacoa rendezvoused north of Ireland with the ocean liner Queen Mary, who was carrying 10,000-odd American troops of the 29th Infantry Division.The liner was steaming an evasive “Zig-Zag Pattern No. 8” course at a speed of 28.5 knots (52.8 km/h; 32.8 mph), an overall rate of advance of 26.5 knots (49.1 km/h; 30.5 mph), to evade submarine attacks. The elderly cruiser remained on a straight course at a top speed of 25 knots (46 km/h; 29 mph) and would eventually be overtaken by the liner.

Each captain had different interpretations of The Rule of the Road believing their ship had the right of way.Captain John Boutwood of the Curacoa kept to the liner’s mean…

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