Get Our Extension

HMCS Esquimalt

From Wikipedia, in a visual modern way
HMCSEsquimalt.jpg
HMCS Esquimalt
History
Canada
NameEsquimalt
NamesakeTownship of Esquimalt
BuilderMarine Industries Ltd., Sorel
Laid down20 December 1940
Launched8 August 1941
Commissioned26 October 1942
IdentificationPennant number: J272
Honours and
awards
Atlantic 1943–44,[1] Gulf of St. Lawrence 1942.[2]
FateSunk 16 April 1945
General characteristics
Class and type Bangor-class minesweeper
Displacement592 long tons (601 t)
Length162 ft (49.4 m)
Beam28 ft (8.5 m)
Draught8.25 ft (2.51 m)
Propulsion2 shafts, 9-cylinder diesel, 2,000 bhp (1,500 kW)
Speed16 knots (30 km/h)
Complement83
Armament

HMCS Esquimalt was a Bangor-class minesweeper that served in the Royal Canadian Navy during the Second World War. She saw service in the Battle of the Atlantic and in the Battle of the St. Lawrence. She was sunk in 1945, the last Canadian warship to suffer that fate. She was named for Esquimalt, British Columbia.

Discover more about HMCS Esquimalt related topics

Bangor-class minesweeper

Bangor-class minesweeper

The Bangor-class minesweepers were a class of warships operated by the Royal Navy (RN), Royal Canadian Navy (RCN), Imperial Japanese Navy (IJN), and Royal Indian Navy (RIN) during the Second World War.

Minesweeper

Minesweeper

A minesweeper is a small warship designed to remove or detonate naval mines. Using various mechanisms intended to counter the threat posed by naval mines, minesweepers keep waterways clear for safe shipping.

Royal Canadian Navy

Royal Canadian Navy

The Royal Canadian Navy is the naval force of Canada. The RCN is one of three environmental commands within the Canadian Armed Forces. As of 2021, the RCN operates 12 frigates, four attack submarines, 12 coastal defence vessels, eight patrol class training vessels, two offshore patrol vessels, and several auxiliary vessels. The RCN consists of 8,570 Regular Force and 4,111 Primary Reserve sailors, supported by 3,800 civilians. Vice-Admiral Angus Topshee is the current commander of the Royal Canadian Navy and chief of the Naval Staff.

Battle of the Atlantic

Battle of the Atlantic

The Battle of the Atlantic, the longest continuous military campaign in World War II, ran from 1939 to the defeat of Nazi Germany in 1945, covering a major part of the naval history of World War II. At its core was the Allied naval blockade of Germany, announced the day after the declaration of war, and Germany's subsequent counter-blockade. The campaign peaked from mid-1940 through to the end of 1943.

Battle of the St. Lawrence

Battle of the St. Lawrence

The Battle of the St. Lawrence involved marine and anti-submarine actions throughout the lower St. Lawrence River and the entire Gulf of Saint Lawrence, Strait of Belle Isle, Anticosti Island and Cabot Strait from May–October 1942, September 1943, and again in October–November 1944. During this time, German U-boats sank over 20 merchant ships and four Canadian warships. There were several near-shore actions involving the drop of German spies, or the attempted pickup of escaping prisoners of war. Despite the 23 ships lost, this battle marked a strategic victory for Canadian forces as ultimately they managed to disrupt U-boat activity, protect Canadian and Allied convoys, and intercept all attempted shore operations. This marked the first time that a foreign power had inflicted casualties in Canadian inland waters since the US incursions in the War of 1812.

Design and description

The Bangor class was initially to be a scaled down minesweeper design of the Halcyon class in Royal Navy service.[3][4] However, due to the difficulty procuring diesel engines led to the small number of the diesel version being completed.[4] The ships displaced 592 long tons (601 t) standard and 690 long tons (700 t) fully loaded. They were 162 feet (49.4 m) long with a beam of 28 feet (8.5 m) and a draught of 8 feet 3 inches (2.51 m).[4][5] However, the size of the ship led to criticisms of their being too cramped for magnetic or acoustic minesweeping gear.[4] This may have been due to all the additions made during the war with the installation of ASDIC, radar and depth charges.[3]

The Bangor class came in two versions. Esquimalt was of the diesel-powered version, being equipped with a 9-cylinder diesel engine driving two shafts that produced 2,000 brake horsepower (1,500 kW). This gave the ship a maximum speed of 16.5 knots (30.6 km/h). The vessels carried 65 long tons (66 t) of oil.[4] The vessels had a complement of 6 officers and 77 ratings.[5]

The Canadian diesel-powered Bangors were armed with a single quick-firing (QF) 12-pounder 12 cwt gun mounted forward.[4][5][a] Initially the design called for a 4-inch (102 mm) gun, however these were replaced with 12-pounder guns. The ships were also fitted with a QF 2-pounder Mark VIII gun aft and were eventually fitted with single-mounted QF 20 mm Oerlikon guns on the bridge wings.[6] For those ships assigned to convoy duty, they were armed with two depth charge launchers and two chutes to deploy the 40 depth charges they carried.[4][6]

Discover more about Design and description related topics

Halcyon-class minesweeper

Halcyon-class minesweeper

The Halcyon class was a class of 21 oil-fired minesweepers built for the British Royal Navy between 1933 and 1939. They were given traditional small ship names used historically by the Royal Navy and served during World War II.

Royal Navy

Royal Navy

The Royal Navy (RN) is the United Kingdom's naval warfare force. Although warships were used by English and Scottish kings from the early medieval period, the first major maritime engagements were fought in the Hundred Years' War against France. The modern Royal Navy traces its origins to the early 16th century; the oldest of the UK's armed services, it is consequently known as the Senior Service.

Displacement (ship)

Displacement (ship)

The displacement or displacement tonnage of a ship is its weight. As the term indicates, it is measured indirectly, using Archimedes' principle, by first calculating the volume of water displaced by the ship, then converting that value into weight. Traditionally, various measurement rules have been in use, giving various measures in long tons. Today, tonnes are more commonly used.

Length overall

Length overall

Length overall is the maximum length of a vessel's hull measured parallel to the waterline. This length is important while docking the ship. It is the most commonly used way of expressing the size of a ship, and is also used for calculating the cost of a marina berth.

Beam (nautical)

Beam (nautical)

The beam of a ship is its width at its widest point. The maximum beam (BMAX) is the distance between planes passing through the outer extremities of the ship, beam of the hull (BH) only includes permanently fixed parts of the hull, and beam at waterline (BWL) is the maximum width where the hull intersects the surface of the water.

Depth charge

Depth charge

A depth charge is an anti-submarine warfare (ASW) weapon. It is intended to destroy a submarine by being dropped into the water nearby and detonating, subjecting the target to a powerful and destructive hydraulic shock. Most depth charges use high explosive charges and a fuze set to detonate the charge, typically at a specific depth. Depth charges can be dropped by ships, patrol aircraft, and helicopters.

Knot (unit)

Knot (unit)

The knot is a unit of speed equal to one nautical mile per hour, exactly 1.852 km/h. The ISO standard symbol for the knot is kn. The same symbol is preferred by the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), while kt is also common, especially in aviation, where it is the form recommended by the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO). The knot is a non-SI unit. The knot is used in meteorology, and in maritime and air navigation. A vessel travelling at 1 knot along a meridian travels approximately one minute of geographic latitude in one hour.

Quick-firing gun

Quick-firing gun

A quick-firing or rapid-firing gun is an artillery piece, typically a gun or howitzer, which has several characteristics which taken together mean the weapon can fire at a fast rate. Quick-firing was introduced worldwide in the 1880s and 1890s and had a marked impact on war both on land and at sea.

QF 12-pounder 12 cwt naval gun

QF 12-pounder 12 cwt naval gun

The QF 12-pounder 12-cwt gun (Quick-Firing) was a common, versatile 3-inch (76.2 mm) calibre naval gun introduced in 1894 and used until the middle of the 20th century. It was produced by Armstrong Whitworth, Elswick and used on Royal Navy warships, exported to allied countries, and used for land service. In British service "12-pounder" was the rounded value of the projectile weight, and "12 cwt (hundredweight)" was the weight of the barrel and breech, to differentiate it from other "12-pounder" guns.

Oerlikon 20 mm cannon

Oerlikon 20 mm cannon

The Oerlikon 20 mm cannon is a series of autocannons, based on an original German Becker Type M2 20 mm cannon design that appeared very early in World War I. It was widely produced by Oerlikon Contraves and others, with various models employed by both Allied and Axis forces during World War II. Many versions of the cannon are still used today.

Bridge (nautical)

Bridge (nautical)

The bridge, also known as the pilothouse or wheelhouse, is a room or platform of a ship from which the ship can be commanded. When a ship is under way, the bridge is manned by an officer of the watch aided usually by an able seaman acting as a lookout. During critical maneuvers the captain will be on the bridge, often supported by an officer of the watch, an able seaman on the wheel and sometimes a pilot, if required.

Service history

Esquimalt was ordered as part of the 1940–41 building programme. The minesweeper's keel was laid down on 20 December 1940 by Marine Industries Ltd. at Sorel, Quebec. The ship was launched on 8 August 1941 and was commissioned into the Royal Canadian Navy on 26 October 1942 at Sorel with the pennant number J272.[7]

After arriving at Halifax in November 1942, Esquimalt required constant attention by the dockyard as the vessel had a series of mechanical problems, undergoing two periods of repair in March and May 1943. She was then assigned to Newfoundland Force for local patrol duties. In September 1944 she transferred to the Halifax Local Defence Force.[7]

Late that month, Esquimalt underwent a three-month refit at Halifax. She returned to duty with the Halifax Local Defence Force and remained with them until 16 April 1945. On that day, she was torpedoed and sunk a few miles off Chebucto Head, Nova Scotia by U-190, becoming the last Canadian warship lost to enemy action in the war.[8][9]

Last patrol

HMCS Esquimalt memorial plaque at CFB Halifax
HMCS Esquimalt memorial plaque at CFB Halifax

On the evening of 15 April 1945, Esquimalt sailed from Halifax to go on an anti-submarine patrol in the harbour approaches and then to rendezvous with HMCS Sarnia. In the early morning of 16 April she was attacked by U-190, a German U-boat that had been operating around Halifax since early April.[10] U-190's torpedo struck Esquimalt's starboard side engine room with the explosion knocking out the onboard power instantly, preventing any distress signal being sent.[10] She started to list heavily to starboard pushing the lifeboat under water, but the crew managed to get four Carley floats clear of the ship. Esquimalt sank in less than five minutes. Because of the lack of distress calls or signals from Esquimalt, and the unfortunate timing of the attack itself, any rescue effort was substantially delayed which resulted in many men losing their lives to exposure. The crew was adrift on the Carley floats in frigid waters with only light clothing for about six hours.[8] Thirty-nine men died as a result of the attack and the exposure that followed.[7][11][b] The remaining crew members were rescued with the arrival of Sarnia, who unsuccessfully attacked U-190 after making contact with the submarine.[11][12] Two Fairmile B motor launches later sent to patrol the area of the sinking depth charged the wreck of Esquimalt, mistakenly believing it to be a submarine.[10]

Discover more about Service history related topics

Keel

Keel

The keel is the bottom-most longitudinal structural element on a vessel. On some sailboats, it may have a hydrodynamic and counterbalancing purpose, as well. The laying of the keel is often the initial step in the construction of a ship. In the British and American shipbuilding traditions, this event marks the beginning date of a ships construction.

Marine Industries

Marine Industries

Marine Industries Limited (MIL) was a Canadian ship building, hydro-electric and rail car manufacturing company, in Sorel-Tracy, Quebec, with a shipyard located on the Richelieu river about 1 km from the St. Lawrence River. It employed up to 8,500 people during the World War II support effort.

Pennant number

Pennant number

In the Royal Navy and other navies of Europe and the Commonwealth of Nations, ships are identified by pennant number. Historically, naval ships flew a flag that identified a flotilla or type of vessel. For example, the Royal Navy used a red burgee for torpedo boats and a pennant with an H for torpedo boat destroyers. Adding a number to the type-identifying flag uniquely identified each ship.

Halifax, Nova Scotia

Halifax, Nova Scotia

Halifax is the capital and largest municipality of the Canadian province of Nova Scotia, and the largest municipality in Atlantic Canada. Halifax is one of Canada's fastest growing municipalities, and as of 2022, it is estimated that the CMA population of Halifax was 480,582,with 348,634 people in its urban area. The regional municipality consists of four former municipalities that were amalgamated in 1996: Halifax, Dartmouth, Bedford, and Halifax County.

Nova Scotia

Nova Scotia

Nova Scotia is one of the thirteen provinces and territories of Canada. It is one of the three Maritime provinces and one of the four Atlantic provinces. Nova Scotia is Latin for "New Scotland".

German submarine U-190

German submarine U-190

German submarine U-190 was a Type IXC/40 U-boat of Nazi Germany's Kriegsmarine built for service during World War II.

CFB Halifax

CFB Halifax

Canadian Forces Base (CFB) Halifax is Canada's east coast naval base and home port to the Royal Canadian Navy Atlantic fleet, known as Canadian Fleet Atlantic (CANFLTLANT), that forms part of the formation Maritime Forces Atlantic (MARLANT).

G7es torpedo

G7es torpedo

The G7es (T5) "Zaunkönig" ("wren") was a passive acoustic torpedo employed by German U-boats during World War II. It was called the GNAT by the British.

Lifeboat (shipboard)

Lifeboat (shipboard)

A lifeboat or liferaft is a small, rigid or inflatable boat carried for emergency evacuation in the event of a disaster aboard a ship. Lifeboat drills are required by law on larger commercial ships. Rafts (liferafts) are also used. In the military, a lifeboat may double as a whaleboat, dinghy, or gig. The ship's tenders of cruise ships often double as lifeboats. Recreational sailors usually carry inflatable liferafts, though a few prefer small proactive lifeboats that are harder to sink and can be sailed to safety.

Carley float

Carley float

The Carley float was a form of invertible liferaft designed by American inventor Horace Carley (1838–1918). Supplied mainly to warships, it saw widespread use in a number of navies during peacetime and both World Wars until superseded by more modern rigid or inflatable designs. Carley was awarded a patent in 1903 after establishing the Carley Life Float Company of Philadelphia.

Hypothermia

Hypothermia

Hypothermia is defined as a body core temperature below 35.0 °C (95.0 °F) in humans. Symptoms depend on the temperature. In mild hypothermia, there is shivering and mental confusion. In moderate hypothermia, shivering stops and confusion increases. In severe hypothermia, there may be hallucinations and paradoxical undressing, in which a person removes their clothing, as well as an increased risk of the heart stopping.

Fairmile B motor launch

Fairmile B motor launch

The Fairmile Type-B motor launch was a type of motor launch built by British boatbuilder Fairmile Marine and others during the Second World War for the Royal Navy for coastal operations.

Source: "HMCS Esquimalt", Wikipedia, Wikimedia Foundation, (2023, January 25th), https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HMCS_Esquimalt.

Enjoying Wikiz?

Enjoying Wikiz?

Get our FREE extension now!

References

Notes

  1. ^ "Cwt" is the abbreviation for hundredweight, 20 cwt referring to the weight of the gun.
  2. ^ Fisher claims forty-four men died from the sinking.

Citations

  1. ^ "Battle Honours". Britain's Navy. Retrieved 18 September 2013.
  2. ^ "Royal Canadian Warships that Participated in the Battle of the Gulf of St. Lawrence". Veterans Affairs Canada. Archived from the original on 27 September 2013. Retrieved 6 August 2016.
  3. ^ a b Brown, p. 124
  4. ^ a b c d e f g Chesneau (1980), p. 61
  5. ^ a b c Macpherson and Barrie (2002), p. 185
  6. ^ a b Macpherson (1997), p. 58
  7. ^ a b c Macpherson and Barrie (2002), p. 186
  8. ^ a b Fisher, Robert C. (2011). "Within Sight of Shore – The Sinking of HMCS Esquimalt". CFB Esquimalt Naval & Military Museum. Archived from the original on 23 November 2013. Retrieved 30 May 2014.
  9. ^ Schull, p. 397
  10. ^ a b c Darlington and McKee, pp. 220–223
  11. ^ a b Schull, p. 398
  12. ^ Schull, p. 404

Sources

  • Brown, D.K. (2000). Nelson to Vanguard: Warship Design and Development 1923–1945. Chatham Publishing. ISBN 1861761368.
  • Chesneau, Roger, ed. (1980). Conway's All the World's Fighting Ships 1922–1946. Greenwich, UK: Conway Maritime Press. ISBN 0-85177-146-7.
  • Darlington, Robert A.; McKee, Fraser (1996). The Canadian Naval Chronicle 1939–1945: The Successes and Losses of the Canadian Navy in World War II. St. Catharines, Ontario: Vanwell Publishing. ISBN 1-55125-032-2.
  • Macpherson, Ken; Barrie, Ron (2002). The Ships of Canada's Naval Forces 1910–2002 (Third ed.). St. Catharines, Ontario: Vanwell Publishing. ISBN 1-55125-072-1.
  • Macpherson, Ken (1997). Minesweepers of the Royal Canadian Navy 1938–1945. St. Catharines, Ontario: Vanwell Publishing. ISBN 0-920277-55-1.
  • Schull, Joseph (1961). The Far Distant Ships: An Official Account of Canadian Naval Operations in the Second World War. Ottawa: Queen's Printer. OCLC 19974782.
External links

Coordinates: 44°28′N 63°10′W / 44.467°N 63.167°W / 44.467; -63.167

The content of this page is based on the Wikipedia article written by contributors..
The text is available under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike Licence & the media files are available under their respective licenses; additional terms may apply.
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use & Privacy Policy.
Wikipedia® is a registered trademark of the Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., a non-profit organization & is not affiliated to WikiZ.com.