Euterpe

General information

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Name: Euterpe

Year of construction: 1886

Shipyard: J.L.Thompson, Sunderland

Last owner: Austrian Lloyd – Trieste

Body: steel with two masts

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Dimensions: length 96m, beam 11,6m

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Displacement: 2,270 t

Engine: 2633 s.h.p., triple expansion, 1 screw, 14 knots

Crew: 42 members – Commander: Nichetic Eli

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Depth: 76m

Euterpe is the first Austrian Lloyd ship with a triple expansion steam engine that sailed along the Eastern Adriatic route. She was torpedoed and sunk by the Italian submarine SMG F-7, under the command of Captain Falangole, on August 11, 1918 at 9:45 near the island of Pag, 3 nm north of Novalja. Euterpe was being used as a troopship and at the time of the sinking, there were 1,000 Austrian soldiers, out of which 555 died detained in the interior of the ship. There was only one rescue boat and a limited number of small rafts. The survivors were rescued by Ct Magnet, the torpedo boats, TB -55 and TB-64, and by local people from Novalja who came to their rescue.

Euterpe had three tall superstructures elevated above the deck – one on the stern, one on the bow, and a central superstructure. She also had two masts and three large hatch covers leading to lower deck cargo space. The wreck lies upright on a sludgy sea floor at a depth of 79 m. There are no traces of the bow superstructure. The stern is destroyed and the debris is scattered around the ship. Only the tallest floor of the stern superstructure can be accessed, as the lower levels are cramped with sediment. This part of the ship was probably designated for passengers’ daily activities (dining hall etc.), since plates, glass and ceramic vases and dishes were found in the sediments. The stern hatchway to the cargo space, leads to three lower decks, which are also covered with sedimentation. As far as the central superstructure is concerned, no accessible entrance has yet been found through which one could access the holds.

The two side promenades are cramped with sediment, leaving about 40 to 50cm for passage. The central superstructure i.e. the main bridge, probably hit by the torpedo, collapsed, taking down the promenades. The only recognizable detail on the bridge is the wheelhouse. On the area below it, though largely devastated by the explosion, there is an entrance to the lower decks where most of the soldiers died. However, it is covered with a layer of sediment and therefore no human remains or personal belongings can be seen. The fore-mast is broken and is found by the side of the ship. The bow superstructure is completely covered with unrecognizable debris and sediment. The bow hold can be accessed through a large deck lid, although it is full of sediments. The Euterpe which by the way is located only 3 nm from the Albanien is among the nicer wrecks. If you wish to dive and investigate both wrecks you should spend a week as both should be visited twice. So if you can find time, these two diving locations are definitely worth it.

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