The Rescue steamer Parat

The rescue steamer Parat

The rescue steamer Parat was called upon to help the grounded German freighter Ferndale - but both were sunk in an allied air attack on the Norwegian west coast.

Posted on Jan 28, 2012

On December 16, 1944 a German convoy of five ships were heading north. Among them was Ferndale, a 5.032 GRT freighter seized by the nazi occupation forces.

Due to strong currents and the general blackout, Ferndale ran aground in the Krakhelle sound north of the Sognefjord where she hit the enormous Sail Rock.

She was taking in water and needed assistance by divers - and the rescue steamer Parat was called in to help. It was to be her final rescue operation.

Ferndale's fate sealed: Combined with treacherous currents, the huge Sail Rock located in the middle of the Krakhelle sound is a constant hazard to shipping. Here seen from below the surface.

Soon after Parat's arrival the next morning, the convoy came under attack by British Mosquito bombers from Banff Strike Wing. Both Ferndale and Parat were shot into flames.

Parat sank after a few hours, and settled on the bottom at 60 meters depth. A little while later Ferndale followed suit, missing the smaller ship by just four feet.

Diving in low light conditions quickly makes Parat a nightdive due to the depth.

This unique twin wreck dive is a spectacular diving experience. How often do you get to see two largely intact ships from WWII on one dive?

If you want to dive Ferndale and Parat, you should get in touch with Gulen Dive Resort. They run trips to the wrecks on a regular basis, all year round.

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