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Hole torn in the hull of RMS Olympic after the collision with HMS Hawke in the Solent, 1911

Hole torn in the hull of RMS Olympic after the collision with HMS Hawke in the Solent, 1911


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Hole torn in the hull of RMS Olympic after the collision with HMS Hawke in the Solent, 1911

Hole torn in the hull of RMS Olympic after the collision with HMS Hawke in the Solent, 20th September 1911. The collision took place as Olympic and Hawke were running parallel to each other through the Solent. As Olympic turned to starboard, the wide radius of her turn took the commander of Hawke by surprise, and he was unable to take sufficient avoiding action. Hawkes bow, collided with Olympics starboard side near the stern, tearing two large holes in Olympics hull, above and below the waterline which resulted in the flooding of two of her watertight compartments and a twisted propeller shaft. At a subsequent inquiry the Royal Navy blamed Olympic for the incident, alleging that her large displacement generated a suction that pulled Hawke into her side

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Media ID 15515640

© Kirk & Sons of Cowes / Heritage-Images

Accident Arthur Henry Arthur Henry Kirk Cowes Edgar Wp Edgar Wp Kirk Hampshire Harland And Wolff Incident Kirk Kirk Sons Of Kirk Sons Of Cowes Liner Ocean Liner Passenger Ship Rms Titanic Shipbuilding Southampton Steamship Titanic Transatlantic White Star Line William Umpleby William Umpleby Kirk Hms Hawke Rms Olympic Warship


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> Europe > United Kingdom > England > Southampton


EDITORS COMMENTS
This print captures a haunting moment in maritime history - the aftermath of the collision between RMS Olympic and HMS Hawke in the Solent on September 20th, 1911. As these two vessels were running parallel to each other, Olympic made a sudden starboard turn with such a wide radius that it caught Hawke's commander off guard. Tragically, Hawke's bow collided with Olympic's starboard side near the stern, resulting in two large holes torn into her hull above and below the waterline. The impact caused significant damage to Olympic, flooding two watertight compartments and twisting her propeller shaft. In this image, we witness the consequences of this fateful encounter as workers inspect the gaping hole in Olympic's hull. The incident sparked controversy during subsequent inquiries when blame was placed on Olympic by the Royal Navy. They alleged that her massive displacement created a suction force that drew Hawke towards her side. This photograph serves as a reminder of both technological advancements and human error within the shipbuilding industry during this era. It also offers us insight into how accidents at sea could have far-reaching consequences for transportation and transatlantic travel. Despite its tragic nature, this image stands as a testament to resilience as both ships continued their respective journeys after extensive repairs were carried out.

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