Fujikawa Maru

Fujikawa Maru was a cargo ship originally built in 1938 for the Toyo Kaiun Kisen Kaisha and was requisitioned by the Imperial Japanese Navy during World War II for use as an armed aircraft transport or ferry. She was sunk in Truk Lagoon in 1944 during Operation Hailstone and is now a leading wreck diving site for scuba divers.

Fujikawa Maru
The Fujikawa Maru wreck
History
Japan
Name: Fujikawa Maru
Owner: Toyo Kaiun K.K., Tokyo
Operator: Imperial Japanese Navy
Builder: Mitsubishi Zosensho, Nagasaki
Yard number: 45067
Launched: 1938
Homeport: Tokyo
Fate: Sunk by torpedo attack 17 February 1944
General characteristics
Type: Transport
Displacement: 6,938 long tons (7,049 t)
Length: 437.4 ft (133.3 m)
Beam: 58.5 ft (17.8 m)
Draught: 26 ft (7.9 m)
Speed: 13.5 knots (25.0 km/h)
Range: 5,000 nmi (9,300 km; 5,800 mi) at 13.5 knots (25.0 km/h; 15.5 mph)
Complement: 162
Service record
Operations: Battle of Midway, Operation Hailstorm

History

Fujikawa Maru was requisitioned in 1940 by the Imperial Japanese Navy, and was based in Indo-China under the command of the 11th Fleet. She saw service in the Battle of Midway as part of AiRon 7. On 12 September 1943 she was hit by a torpedo fired by the United States submarine Permit, and returned to Japan for repairs. Subsequently on 5 December 1943 she was hit by torpedo bombers from the aircraft carrier USS Yorktown suffering minor damage. From thence she was taken to Truk Lagoon (now Chuuk Lagoon) to undergo repairs.

On 17–18 February 1944 she was hit repeatedly by US bombers and torpedo bombers as part of Operation Hailstone, before she finally sank on 18 February at approximately 7.15am.

Dive site

Fujikawa Maru is regarded as the best scuba diving site in Chuuk Lagoon by both of the principal authors who have undertaken comprehensive surveys of the lagoon, Dan E. Bailey[1] and Klaus Lindemann.

Amongst the more striking features on the wreck are four disassembled Mitsubishi fighter aircraft in one of the forward holds. Three of the aircraft are A6M Zeros and the fourth is an A5M Claude. The vessel also boasts a 6-inch (152 mm) bow gun, left over from the Sino-Japanese war and retrofitted.

The Times named it as one of the top 10 wreck dives in the world,[2] and Aquaviews ranked it as the fourth best wreck dive in the world.[3]

Footnotes

  1. ^ At page 288 of his book, Mr Bailey indicated "The wreck has long been the best known and associated with the best of the attractions that Truk has to offer."
  2. ^ The Times (3 March 2007). "World's best wreck diving". Retrieved 6 February 2010.
  3. ^ "World's Top 10 Wreck Dives (Part-II)". 5 July 2009. Archived from the original on 9 March 2011. Retrieved 14 February 2011.

References

  • Bailey, Dan E. (1992). World War II: Wrecks of the Kwajalein and Truk Lagoons. North Valley Diver Publications. ISBN 0-911615-05-9.

External links

Coordinates: 7°20′48″N 151°53′24″E / 7.34667°N 151.89000°E

11th Air Fleet (Imperial Japanese Navy)

The 11th Air Fleet (第十一航空艦隊, Dai-Jūichi Kōkū Kantai) was a grouping of naval aviation and surface units.

Choo-Ha

Choo-Ha, Tamcach-Ha and Multun-Ha are a series of small cenotes close to the Mayan site of Cobá in central Yucatán Peninsula. All of them are accessible to the public for swimming. Choo-Ha has a small entrance of only about 3 by 4 meters.

Chuuk Lagoon

Chuuk Lagoon (also previously known as Truk Lagoon) is a sheltered body of water in the central Pacific. About 1,800 kilometres (1,100 miles) north-east of New Guinea, it is located mid-ocean at 7 degrees North latitude, and is part of Chuuk State within the Federated States of Micronesia. The atoll consists of a protective reef, 225 kilometres (140 mi) around, enclosing a natural harbour 79 by 50 kilometres (49 by 31 miles), with an area of 2,130 square kilometres (820 square miles). It has a land area of 93.07 square kilometres (35.93 square miles), with a population of 36,158 people and a maximal height of 443 m. Weno city on Moen Island functions as the atoll's capital and also as the state capital and is the largest city in the FSM with its 13,700 people.

Dinorwic Quarry

The Dinorwic Quarry is a large former slate quarry, now home to the Welsh National Slate Museum, located between the villages of Llanberis and Dinorwig in North Wales. It was the second largest slate quarry in Wales, indeed in the world, after the neighbouring Penrhyn Quarry near Bethesda.It covered more than 700 acres (283 ha) consisting of two main quarry sections with 20 galleries in each and a number of ancillary workings. Extensive internal tramway systems connected the quarries using inclines to transport slate between galleries.

Index of recreational dive sites

See the Glossary of underwater diving terminology for definitions of technical terms, jargon, diver slang and acronyms used in underwater diving

See the Outline of underwater diving for a hierararchical listing of underwater diving related articles

See the Index of underwater divers for an alphabetical listing of articles about underwater divers

See the Index of underwater diving for an alphabetical listing of underwater diving related articlesThe following index is provided as an overview of and topical guide to recreational dive sites:

Recreational dive sites – specific places that recreational divers go to enjoy the underwater environment or are used for training purposes.

Index of underwater divers

See the Glossary of underwater diving terminology for definitions of technical terms, jargon, diver slang and acronyms used in underwater diving

See the Outline of underwater diving for a hierararchical listing of underwater diving related articles

See the Outline of underwater divers for a hierararchical listing of biographical articles on underwater divers

See the Index of underwater diving for an alphabetical listing of underwater diving related articles

See the Index of recreational dive sites for an alphabetical listing of underwater dive site related articlesThe following index is provided as an overview of and topical guide to underwater divers:

Underwater divers are people who take part in underwater diving activities – Underwater diving is practiced as part of an occupation, or for recreation, where the practitioner submerges below the surface of the water or other liquid for a period which may range between seconds to order of a day at a time, either exposed to the ambient pressure or isolated by a pressure resistant suit, to interact with the underwater environment for pleasure, competitive sport, or as a means to reach a work site for profit or in the pursuit of knowledge, and may use no equipment at all, or a wide range of equipment which may include breathing apparatus, environmental protective clothing, aids to vision, communication, propulsion, maneuverability, buoyancy and safety equipment, and tools for the task at hand.

Index of underwater diving

See the Glossary of underwater diving terminology for definitions of technical terms, jargon, diver slang and acronyms used in underwater diving

See the Outline of underwater diving for a hierararchical listing of underwater diving related articles

See the Index of underwater divers for an alphabetical listing of articles about underwater divers

See the Index of recreational dive sites for an alphabetical listing of articles about places which are recreational dive sitesThe following index is provided as an overview of and topical guide to underwater diving:

Underwater diving can be described as all of the following:

A human activity – intentional, purposive, conscious and subjectively meaningful sequence of actions. Underwater diving is practiced as part of an occupation, or for recreation, where the practitioner submerges below the surface of the water or other liquid for a period which may range between seconds to order of a day at a time, either exposed to the ambient pressure or isolated by a pressure resistant suit, to interact with the underwater environment for pleasure, competitive sport, or as a means to reach a work site for profit or in the pursuit of knowledge, and may use no equipment at all, or a wide range of equipment which may include breathing apparatus, environmental protective clothing, aids to vision, communication, propulsion, maneuverability, buoyancy and safety equipment, and tools for the task at hand.

List of shipwrecks in February 1944

The list of shipwrecks in February 1944 includes ships sunk, foundered, grounded, or otherwise lost during February 1944.

List of shipwrecks of Oceania

This is a list of shipwrecks located in the region of Oceania.

Mitsubishi A5M

The Mitsubishi A5M, formal Japanese Navy designation Mitsubishi Navy Type 96 Carrier-based Fighter (九六式艦上戦闘機), experimental Navy designation Mitsubishi Navy Experimental 9-Shi Carrier Fighter, company designation Mitsubishi Ka-14, was a Japanese carrier-based fighter aircraft. It was the world's first monoplane shipboard fighter to enter service and the direct predecessor of the famous Mitsubishi A6M "Zero". The Allied reporting name was Claude.

Operation Hailstone

Operation Hailstone (Japanese: トラック島空襲, romanized: Torakku-tō Kūshū), lit. "the airstrike on Truk Island"), 17–18 February 1944, was a massive United States Navy air and surface attack on Truk Lagoon conducted as part of the American offensive drive against the Imperial Japanese Navy (IJN) through the Central Pacific Ocean during World War II.

Prior to Operation Hailstone, the IJN had used Truk as an anchorage for its large Combined Fleet. The coral atoll surrounding Truk's islands created a safe harbor where the few points of ingress and egress had been fortified by the Japanese with shore batteries, antiaircraft guns, and airfields.

American estimates of Truk's defenses and its role as a stronghold of the Japanese Navy led newspapers and military men to call it the "Gibraltar of the Pacific", or to compare it with Pearl Harbor. Truk's location in the Caroline Islands also made it an excellent shipping hub for armaments and aircraft moving from Japan's home islands down through the South Pacific Mandate and into the Japanese "Southern Resources Area".

By early 1944, Truk was increasingly unsustainable as a forward base of operations for the Japanese. To the west, American and Australian forces under General Douglas MacArthur had moved up through the Southwest Pacific, isolating or overrunning many Japanese strong points as part of Operation Cartwheel. The U.S. Navy, Marine Corps, and Army, under the command of Admiral Chester W. Nimitz, had overrun the most important islands in the nearby Gilbert Islands and Marshall Islands, and then built numerous air bases there.

As a result, the Japanese Navy had to relocate the Combined Fleet's forward base to the Palau Islands, and eventually to Indonesia, and the Fleet had begun clearing its major warships out of Truk before the Hailstone attack struck.

Nevertheless, the Hailstone attack on Truk caught a good number of Japanese auxiliary ships and cargo ships in the harbor, as well as some warships. Between the air attacks and surface ship attacks over the two days of Operation Hailstone, the worst blow against the Japanese was about 250 warplanes destroyed, with the concurrent irreplaceable loss of experienced pilots. Also, about forty ships — two light cruisers, four destroyers, nine auxiliary ships, and about two dozen cargo vessels — were sunk.

Considerable damage was inflicted on the various island bases, including dockyards, communications centers, supply dumps, and its submarine base. Truk remained effectively isolated for the remainder of the war, cut off and surrounded by the American island hopping campaign in the Central Pacific, which also bypassed important Japanese garrisons and airfields in the Bismarck Archipelago, the Caroline Islands, the Marshalls, and the Palaus. Meanwhile, the Americans built new bases from scratch at places like the Admiralty Islands, Majuro, and Ulithi Atoll, and took over the major port at Guam.

Outline of recreational dive sites

Recreational dive sites – Specific places that recreational divers go to enjoy the underwater environment or are used for training purposes

Outline of underwater diving

The following outline is provided as an overview of and topical guide to underwater diving:

Underwater diving – as a human activity, is the practice of descending below the water's surface to interact with the environment.

SS Washingtonian (1913)

SS Washingtonian was a cargo ship launched in 1913 by the Maryland Steel Company of Sparrows Point, Maryland, near Baltimore, as one of eight sister ships for the American-Hawaiian Steamship Company. At the time of her launch, she was the largest cargo ship under American registry. During the United States occupation of Veracruz in April 1914, Washingtonian was chartered by the United States Department of the Navy for service as a non-commissioned refrigerated supply ship for the U.S. fleet stationed off the Mexican coast.

In January 1915, after a little more than one year of service, Washingtonian collided with the schooner Elizabeth Palmer off the Delaware coast and sank in ten minutes with the loss of her $1,000,000 cargo of 10,000 long tons (10,200 t) of raw Hawaiian sugar. In the days after Washingtonian's sinking, the price of sugar in the United States increased almost nine percent, partly attributed to the loss of Washingtonian's cargo. Lying under approximately 100 feet (30 m) of water, Washingtonian's wreck is one of the most popular recreational dive sites on the eastern seaboard.

Sodwana Bay

Sodwana Bay is a bay in South Africa on the KwaZulu Natal north coast, between St. Lucia and Lake Sibhayi. It is in the Sodwana Bay National Park, and the Maputaland Marine Reserve, and is a popular recreational diving destination. The term is commonly used to refer to both the marine reserve and the terrestrial park, as well as the geographical bay.

Sodwana Bay National Park is a narrow strip of forested sand dunes located along the east coast. Proclaimed a national park in the 1950s, it is frequented by anglers and divers. Sodwana is situated in the Maputaland Marine Protected Area and is the only recreational scuba diving area along the Greater St Lucia Wetlands Park (now renamed to iSimangaliso) coastline. Classified as one of the top dive sites in the world, the park is visited by some 35 000 scuba divers per year. The bay is near the southern end of the tropical western Indo-Pacific marine ecoregion, and reef-building corals are present. The 50 km reef complex is the habitat of a wide diversity of resident and migratory species. Several submarine canyons cut into the edge of the continental shelf, which is very close to the shoreline. It was in one of these that on 27 November 2000 that a resident population of coelacanths was discovered.

Sailfish, king mackerel, kingfish and other pelagic species of game fish migrate south down the east coast of Africa and since the activities of sea pirates off the coast of north east Africa healthy populations of pelagic game fish again reach all the way south off the coast of South Africa which has re-established Sodwana as a sport fishing destination for pelagic species. The marine protected area is known for endangered marine megafauna including whale sharks, great white sharks, hammerhead sharks, blacktip sharks, manta rays, orange-spotted groupers, potato cod, critically endangered leatherback turtles, loggerhead sea turtles, and coelacanths. The discovery of Coelacanths made the region world-famous. In the March 2011 issue of National Geographic, a short article titled Ancient Swimmers appeared, discussing the discovery of coelacanths in the depths of Sodwana Bay and the surrounding area. A small section of the written article explains that:

Since this chance sighting, Latimeria chalumnae have been found in several pockets in and around the Indian Ocean. No one knows how many there are - maybe as few as 1,000 or as many as 10, 000. Because of the depth of their habitat, they have mainly been photographed by submersibles and remotely operated vehicles. Divers first documented the fish [in Sodwana Bay] in 2000; in January and February 2010, a specially trained team dived to take pictures of [another] small colony in Sodwana Bay, South Africa.

Whale watching targeting migratory or resident cetaceans is a local tourist industry. Bottlenose dolphins live in the vicinity and have been observed to swim with whale sharks. Humpback whales migrate through the bay during winter to spring seasons while southern right whales and other species are less common. Orcas may also visit the bay waters.The land areas of the iSimangaliso Wetland Park are home to species of large land animals such as lions, giraffes, elephants, hippos and rhinos.

Space Battleship Yamato

Space Battleship Yamato (Japanese: 宇宙戦艦ヤマト, Hepburn: Uchū Senkan Yamato, also called Cosmoship Yamato and Star Blazers) is a Japanese science fiction anime series produced and written by Yoshinobu Nishizaki, directed by manga artist Leiji Matsumoto, and animated by Academy Productions and Group TAC. The series aired in Yomiuri TV from October 6, 1974 to March 30, 1975, totaling up to 26 episodes. It revolves around the character Susumu Kodai (Derek Wildstar) and a crew of people on Earth, tasked in going into space aboard the space warship Yamato in search for the Planet Iscandar in order to reverse the damage done to their planet after it was destroyed by the Gamilians.

It is one of the most influential anime series in Japan due to its theme and story, marking a turn towards more complex serious works and influencing works such as Mobile Suit Gundam, Neon Genesis Evangelion and Super Dimension Fortress Macross as well as video games such as Space Invaders. Hideaki Anno has ranked Yamato as his favorite anime and credited it with sparking his interest in anime.Yamato was the first anime series or movie to win the Seiun Award, a feat not repeated until the film Nausicaä of the Valley of the Wind (1984).

USS Izard

USS Izard (DD-589), a Fletcher-class destroyer, was a ship of the United States Navy named for Lieutenant Ralph Izard (1785–1822),

Izard was launched 8 August 1942 by the Charleston Navy Yard; sponsored by Mrs. Robert E. Lee III, great-granddaughter of Lt. Ralph Izard; and commissioned 15 May 1943, Commander Earl K. Van Swearingen in command.

Whitstable Museum and Gallery

Whitstable Museum and Gallery is a heritage centre in Whitstable, Kent, with displays showing the history of the local oyster trade started by the Romans and of historical diving equipment.

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