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Re: Indomitable was. On 16th July 1943
Posted by Steve Millard on December 7, 2017, 7:36:00, in reply to "Re: Indomitable was. On 16th July 1943"
Almost six and a half hours after leaving Malta, when Indomitable was about 90 miles north-east of the island, with 6 Albacores airborne on anti-submarine and anti-surface vessel searches, at 0025, a single enemy Ju-88 got through the ship's radar defences unobserved and dropped a torpedo, which hit her on the port side abreast the port boiler room, where it exploded with devastating results. The torpedo hit her port side amidships as she turned hard to port to evade, the heel bringing her side well down. Thus it struck the lower edge of her belt armour, about 4ft 6in below her main deck level. One plate disintegrated, fragments passing through the intervening longitudinal bulkheads and piercing the 60lb boiler room protective bulkhead. The torpedo made a 28 x 25 ft hole in her outer plating, and the fragments a 6 x 8ft hole in the 60lb bulkhead. Her speed was immediately reduced to 7 knots. Probably largely because the ship was already heeling when she was hit, she soon took a 12 degree list. The lessons of the Ark Royal were heeded: officers commenced counter-flooding immediately, without waiting for further orders. The port boiler room flooded and was put out of action, but the centre boiler room (which had been shut down when it was filled with steam from the port room) was soon restarted. Within 45 minutes, the carrier was steaming at 14 knots toward Malta, escorted by Warspite, Valiant, Faulknor, Fury, Eclipse, Inglefield, Intrepid, Petard, Raider and Queen Olga, where she moored safely at 1230. En route to Malta for repairs, she operated aircraft.
: Hit on Port Side, port boiler room extensively
: damaged, also armour and hull plating.
: Emergency repairs Malta, Liverpool and then
: Norfolk Navy Yard, completing 20th April
: --Previous Message--
: Night attack by Ju.88 in the Med, which
: a serious amount of damage, apparently
: partially due to fracturing of a corner of
: the armoured belt. But I don't have the
: --Previous Message--
: ...were torpedoed by aircraft ?
: Randy Stone
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