Oswego Guardian / Texanita

31st July 2007, 13:56
Anybody remember this ?

On 21 August 1972, the OSWEGO GUARDIAN, fully loaded from PG west about the Cape, rammed the TEXANITA, in ballast east about from Trinidad for Ras Tanurah, in thick fog about 30 miles from Cape Agulhas. She then exploded and sank in 4 minutes, leaving only a few survivors.

I have just posted a pic in the Shipping Accidents Gallery of OSWEGO GUARDIAN in the F C Sturrock graving dock in Cape Town undergoing repairs, taken on 10 September 1972.

After 35 years, I wonder who remembers the casualties on TEXANITA, except their families. We all should.


wayne vk
30th January 2012, 17:50
Hello there, I found the photo of the Oswego Guardian, thank you.
I own the bell of the Texanita, which was in for repair when the tanker left the harbour.
I wondered if you didn't possibly have a photo or something of the Texanita? Or access to the location of this?

30th January 2012, 22:53
I remember the incident well as we rounded the Cape a couple of days later homeward bound from the Gulf. The launch brought out newspapers that were full of photos of the casualty. Our captain, a singularly self-centred and unpleasant man, had a wife at home due to give birth very shortly and he was determined to be home for the occasion and he was not going to slow down for anything. I well recall several watches hammering along at full speed in pretty poor visibility with those pictures very present in my mind. One of the few times in a long seagoing career that I was truly scared.

wayne vk
31st January 2012, 12:03
Hello Cboots, which ship were you on?

wayne vk
31st January 2012, 12:07
Sorry, I just read your message better, you were on the Oswego Guardian. Excuse my silly question.

31st January 2012, 22:49
G'day wayne VK - I had better not reveal the actual name of the vessel as it would betray the anonymity of persons that I have not been too flattering about. Suffice to say that it was a British flagged tanker owned by a well-known company not only associated with tankers.

31st January 2012, 23:15
I was around and about that area at the time of that collision. We were running PG/Europe and PG/Brazil.
They had put in place a traffic separation scheme off the Alphard Bank.....which was different to the one in place now.. see pic for present one.
I think the original one was to the north of the bank.
Anywaze... it put ships adhering to the scheme ( which put a slight dogleg into their track) into conflict with ships still going straight through on the old logical track as you would find ships coming up very fine to port or starboard and 'interesting situations' even in good vis... ie fine to starboard showing red ( and with VLCCs and other biggish stuff the steaming lights looking nice and 'wide' ' but with a cpa of about half a cable.....

I think that is why they changed the scheme in that area.

1st February 2012, 06:45
Updated chartlet.... the red circle NE of the bank marks the position of the collision....

10th March 2012, 23:59
I also remember this incident. We were steaming West from Port Elizabeth on the "City Of Delhi" and sailed through an oil slick which was all that was left of the Texanita. I remember thinking how scary it was that such a big ship,as she was for those days, could sink so quickly with the loss of the whole crew.Later in Capetown we saw the Oswego Guardian under repair. Although not close enough to be involved have never forgotten that night.. Neil W.

rhodesian ridgeback
16th March 2013, 06:46
I was the radio officer on board the Nata/5lit-in ballast from Isle of Grain to Kharg Island Iran and we were in the same thick fog about 50 miles from the collision.
We received the distress call from ZSC Cape Town radio on 2182/vhf and 500khz.The auto alarm was activated by ZSC and I don't recall any call from the Oswego Guardian but there was a lot of vhf chatter.We did not alter course or respond to the emergency but informed ZSC of our position but there were vessels closer than us as we were about 3 hours away.
As mentioned in one of the postings there were "traffic Lanes" around the Cape due to the high volume of tanker traffic at that time.Our navigating officers,from what I can remember put the blame on the Oswego Guardian as being out of its proper position.I am not sure what the court of enquiry found as I have not researched this and just found this posting.
Hope this is of some use.73s and cheers.

28th May 2013, 02:53
Hi Andy,

Yes, we remember this.. We are actually looking for more information about this collision. My father was one of the crew of Texanita tanker. It's been 40 years and we hardly know anything about our father. My mother said that it was a collision and that my father was one of the missing crew.

We would appreciate if you have any pictures and anything that would help us get the manifesto of the Texanita.


Les Gibson
29th May 2013, 08:45
I was on the I.D.Sinclair (CP Ships) Maiden voyage Kharg Island - Fos, close by but we were asked not to get involved as there was risk of further casualties. Apparently all was being done to help.Sad affair. My thoughts still with families.