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World War II Lifeboat Discovered Near Orkney Islands

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Orkney life boatORKNEY ISLANDS, SCOTLAND—According to a report in The Herald Scotland, underwater archaeologists with the Shiptime Maritime Archaeology Project have found a small vessel lost on October 13, 1939, after a German submarine attacked HMS Royal Oak, which was moored in Scapa Bay. More than 800 of the 1,200 battleship’s crew were lost in the attack. About 100 of the men escaped to the small steam-powered pinnace, which had been tethered to the side of HMS Royal Oak. But the small lifeboat, designed to carry 59 people, capsized and sank. It was found about 1,000 feet from HMS Royal Oak. “The site will now be recorded and will add to our knowledge surrounding the sinking of HMS Royal Oak,” said Pete Higgins of the Orkney Research Centre for Archaeology. To read about the underwater archaeology of the attack on Pearl Harbor, go to “December 7, 1941.”

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