american US Maritime Commission - War Shipping Administration - WSA.) SS Quinault Victory (+1944)
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  Details  
 
general
nationality american
purpose transport
type cargo ship
subtype/class Victory VC2-S-AP3 (am.)
Victory VC2-S-AP3 (am.) Luray Victory SS [+1946]
propulsion steam
date built 1944
is nickname no
status
unknown
details
weight (tons) 7643  gross tonnage  [*]
dimensions 138.7 x 18.9 x 8.5 m [*]
material steel
engine 2 steam turbines, 8.500 h.p., single shaft, 1 screw  [*]
armament 5"/127 mm stern gun, bow-mounted 3"/76 mm A.A., 8 x 20 mm A.A. cannon  [*]
power 8500   [*]
speed 16 [*]  knots
about the loss
cause lost explosion
date lost 17/11/1944  [dd/mm/yyyy]
casualties  max.53rank: 585
about people
builder
Kaiser Shipbuilding Co. - Oregon Shipbuilding Corp. - Kaiser Cargo Inc.
engine by
Westinghouse Electric & Mfg. Co., Essington
owner
US Maritime Commission - War Shipping Administration - WSA.), Washington D.C.
captain Robert J. Sullivan
complement 17
no. of crew 36
about the wreck
depth (m.)
orientation
protected
war grave
updates
entered by Lettens Jan
entered 02/02/2008
last update Gothro Phil
last update 30/11/2011


[*] means that the value was inherited from Luray Victory SS [+1946], the reference for Victory VC2-S-AP3 (am.).
 
  Position  
 
[1] Gothro Phil30/11/2011
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Lettens Jan02/02/2008

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  History  
 
Gothro Phil30/11/2011The Port Chicago disaster:

The SS E. A. Bryan was docked at the inboard, landward side of Port Chicago's single 1,500 ft (460 m) pier at 8:15 a.m. on July 13, 1944, while the SS Quinault Victory on the outward, bayside of the same dock. With a dock packed with railcars loaded with depth charges, 1,000-pound (450 kg) bombs, 40 mm shells, fragmentation cluster bombs and incendiary bombs that were being loaded into the E. A. Bryan.

At 10:18 p.m., witnesses reported hearing a noise described as "a metallic sound and rending timbers, such as made by a falling boom.” Immediately afterward, an explosion occurred on the pier and a fire started. Five to seven seconds later, a more powerful explosion took place as the majority of the ordnance within and near the SS E. A. Bryan detonated in a huge fireball some 3 mi (4.8 km) in diameter....

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Gothro Phil30/11/2011[EN]

Dock plan

Graphic reconstruction of the pier, boxcars and ships at Port Chicago just prior to explosion, with estimates of type and weight of cargo

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About Owners
 
US Maritime Commission - War Shipping Administration - WSA.), Washington D.C.

The United States Maritime Commission was an independent executive agency of the U.S. federal government that was created by the Merchant Marine Act of 1936, passed by Congress on June 29, 1936, and replaced the U.S. Shipping Board which had existed since World War I. It was intended to formulate a merchant shipbuilding program to design and build five hundred modern merchant cargo ships to replace the World War I vintage vessels that comprised the bulk of the U.S. Merchant Marine, and to administer a subsidy system authorized by the Act to offset the cost differential between building in the U.S. and operating ships under the American flag. It also formed the U.S. Maritime Service for the training of seagoing ship's officers to man the new fleet.

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About Builders
 Kaiser Shipbuilding Co. - Oregon Shipbuilding Corp. - Kaiser Cargo Inc.
Henry J. Kaiser, established the shipbuilding company around 1939, specifically for the merchant shipping of the United States Maritime Commission. Kaiser constructed many Liberty ships, tankers and LSTs. Shipyards were located in San Francisco, Washington and Portland. The Kaiser Shipyards shut down at the end of the war.
 
 
  History  
 
Gothro Phil30/11/2011The Port Chicago disaster:

The SS E. A. Bryan was docked at the inboard, landward side of Port Chicago's single 1,500 ft (460 m) pier at 8:15 a.m. on July 13, 1944, while the SS Quinault Victory on the outward, bayside of the same dock. With a dock packed with railcars loaded with depth charges, 1,000-pound (450 kg) bombs, 40 mm shells, fragmentation cluster bombs and incendiary bombs that were being loaded into the E. A. Bryan.

At 10:18 p.m., witnesses reported hearing a noise described as "a metallic sound and rending timbers, such as made by a falling boom.” Immediately afterward, an explosion occurred on the pier and a fire started. Five to seven seconds later, a more powerful explosion took place as the majority of the ordnance within and near the SS E. A. Bryan detonated in a huge fireball some 3 mi (4.8 km) in diameter.

Chunks of glowing hot metal and burning ordnance were flung over 12,000 ft (3,700 m) into the air. The E. A. Bryan was completely destroyed and the Quinault was blown out of the water, torn into sections and thrown in several directions; the stern landed upside down in the water 500 ft (150 m) away. The Coast Guard fire boat CG-60014-F was thrown 600 ft (180 m) upriver, where it sank. The pier—along with its boxcars, locomotive, rails, cargo and men—was blasted into pieces. Nearly $9.9 million worth of damage ($124 million in current value) was caused to U.S. Government property.

Seismographs at the University of California, Berkeley sensed the two shock waves traveling through the ground, determining the second, larger event to be equivalent to an earthquake measuring 3.4 on the Richter scale.

All 320 men on duty at the pier died instantly, and 390 civilians and military personnel were injured, many seriously. Among the dead were all five Coast Guard personnel posted aboard the fire barge. African Americans hurt and killed totaled 202 dead and 233 injured, which accounted for 15% of all African-American naval casualties during World War II. Naval personnel worked quickly to contain the fires and to prevent other explosions. Injuries were treated, those seriously injured were hospitalized, and uninjured servicemen were evacuated to nearby stations.
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SS Quinault Victory (+1944)
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