Stanvac Japan

Topherjohn
17th February 2008, 21:35
Does anyone recall the catastrophic explosion aboard mv Stanvac Japan in the India Ocean in October 1958? Nineteen crew members died including the Master. The whole bridge accommodation was lifted and deposited in the sea alongside the hull following an explosion in the 'midships pumproom.
I have further information and some dramatic photos (one attached) if anyone is interested.
Chris Clarke

Ron Stringer
17th February 2008, 21:44
Welcome aboard. Have a look at earlier comments here on that incident.

http://www.shipsnostalgia.com/showthread.php?t=9327&highlight=stanvac+japan

Ian F
23rd February 2008, 23:36
Chris The Japan did not have a midships pumproom.The explosion seemed to
have originated in the vicinity of number 6 tank, but the court of enquiry
couldnt be more specific. Also from what Gordon Allely told me later, when
he eventually looked out from the chartroom, he saw the stern moving away
from him. This would have implied that the whole 400 tons of the midships
accommodation had actually blown right over the after accommodation.
Ian F

Ian F
23rd February 2008, 23:45
Chris Sorry should have added there were 20 crew killed,10 officers and 10 crew. There was also a John Clarke who was Sparks on board but he had
paid off about 6 months before
Ian F

Cisco
24th February 2008, 00:43
Chris The Japan did not have a midships pumproom.The explosion seemed to
have originated in the vicinity of number 6 tank, but the court of enquiry
couldnt be more specific. Also from what Gordon Allely told me later, when
he eventually looked out from the chartroom, he saw the stern moving away
from him. This would have implied that the whole 400 tons of the midships
accommodation had actually blown right over the after accommodation.
Ian F

As I recall there were two explosions..#5 Centre and #8 Stbd. In some of the photos you can see where at least one of the samson posts ended up in an after tank. I think the centrecastle actually ended up alongside ( C/E heard the explosion ...looked out dayroom port and saw the accom alongside) as the ship steamed away from it. Cause was thought but not proven to be something striking one of the manganese anodes they were using at the time.

My father was her master on her maiden voyage and at the time of the explosion was on her sister ship 'Stanvac Australia'. Tank cleaning in the fleet ceased forthwith........

I have a couple of photos of her in the gallery as well as a photo of her as 'Escape' after rebuilding.

Topherjohn
24th February 2008, 11:20
........ My father was her master on her maiden voyage and at the time of the explosion was on her sister ship 'Stanvac Australia'. Tank cleaning in the fleet ceased forthwith........

I have a couple of photos of her in the gallery as well as a photo of her as 'Escape' after rebuilding.
Many thanks for your interesting information. My uncle Capt Howard L Pilley was the regular master of the Japan. Im pretty sure he was also at one time master of Stanvac Australia. My recollection is he was due to sail to the Gulf on the fatal voyage but a few days before departure my auntie who had heart trouble became ill. He was given compassionate leave which saved his life. In the UK we first heard of the disaster on the radio and thought Howard was a goner; he was very fortunate, not so the relief Master.
It seems likely therefore your father knew my Uncle Howard who died 1965 from a heart attack whilst berthed at Burnie Tas by which time he was Master with, I think, Associated Steamships.
A couple of years ago I heard from a cousin of Anthony Jones, apprentice on the Japan, who died in the explosion. She sent a few photos and newspaper cuttings from the Hull Daily Mail. I will upload these to the gallery in the next few days.
I was at sea 1959 1970, coming ashore after my Masters, retired 2003.

Topherjohn
24th February 2008, 11:32
Chris Sorry should have added there were 20 crew killed,10 officers and 10 crew. There was also a John Clarke who was Sparks on board but he had
paid off about 6 months before
Ian F
Many thanks for info including about there being no midships pumproom - I stand corrected. Last year I heard from a lady who's cousin was apprentice Anthony Jones who died on Stanvac Japan. This is an extract from her email "Apart from the Master, there were 16 British Officers and 54 Indian Seamen. 10 of the Seamen were killed, and the Officers killed were: The Master, 1st Officer, 3rd Officer, 4th Officer, Radio Officer, 5th Officer, 5th Officer, Apprentice, Apprentice, Electrician. My cousin thinks our cousin, Anthony Jones, had just gone on Watch and that the Watch was changing, which was why there were so many on the Bridge."
I shall be adding some more photos and newspaper cuttings to gallery in a few days time.

Ian F
24th February 2008, 12:35
As I recall there were two explosions..#5 Centre and #8 Stbd. In some of the photos you can see where at least one of the samson posts ended up in an after tank. I think the centrecastle actually ended up alongside ( C/E heard the explosion ...looked out dayroom port and saw the accom alongside) as the ship steamed away from it. Cause was thought but not proven to be something striking one of the manganese anodes they were using at the time.

My father was her master on her maiden voyage and at the time of the explosion was on her sister ship 'Stanvac Australia'. Tank cleaning in the fleet ceased forthwith........

I have a couple of photos of her in the gallery as well as a photo of hoer

as 'Escape' after rebuilding.

You are quite correct probably no 5 tank and probably also no 8 tank There
was extensive internal damage from no 2 to no 8 tank with associated deck

and shell damage.She lasted for another 17 years as a Bulk carrier as Escape
then Nidareid 1964 Diamond Venture 1967 and brok en up 1975
Not bad considering what she had been through. She was a lovely ship,one
of best I ever sailed on





Escape then

Ian F
24th February 2008, 14:47
Many thanks for your interesting information. My uncle Capt Howard L Pilley was the regular master of the Japan. Im pretty sure he was also at one time master of Stanvac Australia. My recollection is he was due to sail to the Gulf on the fatal voyage but a few days before departure my auntie who had heart trouble became ill. He was given compassionate leave which saved his life. In the UK we first heard of the disaster on the radio and thought Howard was a goner; he was very fortunate, not so the relief Master.
It seems likely therefore your father knew my Uncle Howard who died 1965 from a heart attack whilst berthed at Burnie Tas by which time he was Master with, I think, Associated Steamships.
A couple of years ago I heard from a cousin of Anthony Jones, apprentice on the Japan, who died in the explosion. She sent a few photos and newspaper cuttings from the Hull Daily Mail. I will upload these to the gallery in the next few days.
I was at sea 1959 1970, coming ashore after my Masters, retired 2003.

Spring 1957 and I joined Stanvac Japan as a brand new 3/o (ink not dry on
my ticket) Captain Pilley in command.That was 51 years ago next month.
The years go thundering by.Capt Pilley never made me feel like the new boy
in any way,during the months under his command.But he was very much in
command despite his, to me, laid back authority.He was quite a character.
One of his directives to me in the early weeks of my watchkeeping was...
There are two types of ship you must particularly watch out for 3/o.Ones
a Navy boat,the other one is a Yank...This advice along with many others
stood me in good stead in later years
Captain Pilley was not very old when he died.
He was an Officer and a Gentleman.I remember him as if it was only yesterday

/

Topherjohn
24th February 2008, 17:53
Spring 1957 and I joined Stanvac Japan as a brand new 3/o (ink not dry on
my ticket) Captain Pilley in command.That was 51 years ago next month.
The years go thundering by.Capt Pilley never made me feel like the new boy
in any way,during the months under his command.But he was very much in
command despite his, to me, laid back authority.He was quite a character.
One of his directives to me in the early weeks of my watchkeeping was...
There are two types of ship you must particularly watch out for 3/o.Ones
a Navy boat,the other one is a Yank...This advice along with many others
stood me in good stead in later years
Captain Pilley was not very old when he died.
He was an Officer and a Gentleman.I remember him as if it was only yesterday /
Thanks for your kind comments about my uncle. If you don't mind I'll forward them to my cousins (his children) who live in Oz. Typical comments from him about RN & the Yanks I'd say. Attached photos taken when I visited him as schoolboy on either Edward F Johnson or Stanvac India (can you identify?) berthed at Isle of Grain refinery probably 1952. Even at 10 I was already dreaming of going to sea!

Cisco
24th February 2008, 21:21
Attached photos taken when I visited him as schoolboy on either Edward F Johnson or Stanvac India (can you identify?) berthed at Isle of Grain refinery probably 1952. Even at 10 I was already dreaming of going to sea!

Hello Chris, I reckon the first photo would be on the S/V India based on the samson post top and the second one on the Edward F Johnson based on the single loop DF. Edward F Johnson sounds like one of the prewar Oriental Tankers , Hong Kong , ships.

Capt Pilley was one of at least 3 Stanvac masters living in Melbourne, my father Arthur Holden was another and the third was a gentleman whose name I think was McCormack(sp). When the company was split between Esso and Mobil they disposed of all the T2s and T3s and only kept on a few masters.. my father was one of two or three who went over to Mobil. I think Capt McCormack may have been there for a short time on Sylvan or Royal Arrow.

I met Captain Pilley a few times when he and my father were doing handovers in Melbourne.

I sailed with Capt McCormack in 1968/9 when he was 2/0 in ANL. After the demise of Stanvac he had applied for a job with Associated Steamships, all they offered him was 3/0 on Australian Progress ex Stanvac Progress which he had been master on when she was Stanvac so he took a chance with ANL. Not a good choice... he was lost later in 1969 when Noongah sank off Smoky Cape, northern NSW in heavy weather after a shift of her steel cargo.

Re the bridge of the S/V Japan I believe apart from the 2/0 it was just the cadet and the lookout who were both on the bridge wing at the time.

First ship on the scene was the Swedish(?) 'Patricia' also on Stanvac charter... I have a photo somewhere taken by her R/O also a box of transparencies taken in Bombay... don't hold your breath on me finding them...........


Frank

Topherjohn
24th February 2008, 23:00
Hello Chris, I reckon the first photo would be on the S/V India based on the samson post top and the second one on the Edward F Johnson based on the single loop DF. Edward F Johnson sounds like one of the prewar Oriental Tankers , Hong Kong , ships. ............

First ship on the scene was the Swedish(?) 'Patricia' also on Stanvac charter... I have a photo somewhere taken by her R/O also a box of transparencies taken in Bombay... don't hold your breath on me finding them...........

Frank
Frank
Many thanks for your information. As a child I visited my uncle twice when he docked in UK, the first time on Edward F Johnson & I think you're right about the photo of me having been taken on E F J. Not sure if photo of my uncle on the Stanvac India was taken on my second visit to him or some other occasion. I also visited him at Stanlow in Dec 1959 or Jan 1960 in between leaving Warsash SoN and joining my first ship mv Edenmore at Cardiff.
Like your father Capt Pilley also transferred to Mobil and then later joined Associated Steamships. My cousins in Oz may recall your father's name when I contact them.
Should you eventually locate S/V Japan photos taken from Patricia please let me know.
Chris

Bill Davies
24th February 2008, 23:22
Relieved a Master in the mid 70s when with Kaiser (Frisco) by the name Brian Dawson he had something to do with Stanvac Japan also used to go on about a ChMate who could be seen going around 'topping off' whilst playing the saxophone. Any thoughts??

Bill

Cisco
24th February 2008, 23:25
Frank
My cousins in Oz may recall your father's name when I contact them.
Chris

I think I may have only met him once when he relieved my father on S/V Australai in 1959(?)...also a son..... my father was on 2 of the T3s(Karachi and Canberra)... then the S/V Japan for a year, then S/V Manila and S/V Pretoria then one year on S/V Australia then onto S/V Mariner from 59 to 63.

As I recall the son wanted to be a marine engineer which I thought rather odd..........

Cisco
24th February 2008, 23:31
She was a lovely ship,one
of best I ever sailed on


My father wasn't too impressed, reckoned Mitsubishi Nagasaki had built her out of spare parts...... on the other hand S/V Mariner ( built in the same yard) was, he reckoned, the best ship he ever sailed on.

Topherjohn
24th February 2008, 23:39
I think I may have only met him once when he relieved my father on S/V Australai in 1959(?)...also a son..... my father was on 2 of the T3s(Karachi and Canberra)... then the S/V Japan for a year, then S/V Manila and S/V Pretoria then one year on S/V Australia then onto S/V Mariner from 59 to 63.

As I recall the son wanted to be a marine engineer which I thought rather odd..........
Frank
That was my cousin Clive, youngest of Capt Pilley's sons. He had successful accountancy practice, found he was making to much money doing that so now taking it easy running holiday park in NSW with his wife (Clive - just kidding if you ever read this!).
Chris

Topherjohn
25th February 2008, 12:10
Hello Chris, ........

I sailed with Capt McCormack in 1968/9 when he was 2/0 in ANL. After the demise of Stanvac he had applied for a job with Associated Steamships, all they offered him was 3/0 on Australian Progress ex Stanvac Progress which he had been master on when she was Stanvac so he took a chance with ANL. Not a good choice... he was lost later in 1969 when Noongah sank off Smoky Cape, northern NSW in heavy weather after a shift of her steel cargo.

Frank
My cousin Marion nee Pilley in email reply to me thought McCormack was C/E but as you sailed with him I'm sure you're right, he was Master.

Marion has asked "Is Frank Holden the guy on TV here he used to be a rock band member and moved into acting in Aussie TV and judging reality TV talent shows?"

Sounds like dangerous waters to me so I shan't comment!!
Chris

Cisco
25th February 2008, 12:29
]Is Frank Holden the guy on TV here he used to be a rock band member and moved into acting in Aussie TV and judging reality TV talent shows?
Chris

That bloke is a !!@@##@!!!!! imposter... I'm going to sue him for identity theft!!!! His original name was Bruce or something

Only C/E I remember by name was Jack Collie... he ended up living in Queensland and crossed the river about 10 years ago.

Ian F
25th February 2008, 12:41
My father wasn't too impressed, reckoned Mitsubishi Nagasaki had built her out of spare parts...... on the other hand S/V Mariner ( built in the same yard) was, he reckoned, the best ship he ever sailed on.

de gustibus non est disputandum

Topherjohn
25th February 2008, 20:32
That bloke is a !!@@##@!!!!! imposter... I'm going to sue him for identity theft!!!! His original name was Bruce or something

Only C/E I remember by name was Jack Collie... he ended up living in Queensland and crossed the river about 10 years ago.

You mean this "celeb" character is actually an imposter? Well there's a surprise! Will pass the good news on to my cousin that you're not guilty as charged!

Cisco
25th February 2008, 20:46
You mean this "celeb" character is actually an imposter?

Yep, just another bogan wanting an upmarket name :)

Ian F
26th February 2008, 11:59
Thanks for your kind comments about my uncle. If you don't mind I'll forward them to my cousins (his children) who live in Oz. Typical comments from him about RN & the Yanks I'd say. Attached photos taken when I visited him as schoolboy on either Edward F Johnson or Stanvac India (can you identify?) berthed at Isle of Grain refinery probably 1952. Even at 10 I was already dreaming of going to sea!

Thanks for photograph.Aye thats him,thats the man

Ian F
26th February 2008, 18:49
Chris Clarke
Reference the traditional warning aboutthe Bight of Benin
we used to have a quote from a local.
Eff yo doan laik Wes Afreeca,doan com down heah(Cloud)

JIM C
10th October 2008, 18:38
My Uncle Joe Clark Chief Engineer also spoke of the poor quality of the Stanvac Japan. Said he would never buy a Japanese car because of his experience.

Jim Clark

Jim F
11th December 2008, 20:17
Hi Jim,
I sailed with your uncle on the Stanvac Australia in 1957.He was a hell of a good Chief Eng.Always remenber flying home on leave with him,we had a stop over somewhere,can't remember where,so we had a couple of brew at the airport and when the flight was ready to leave he did'nt show up so I went back to the Lounge and there he was still having another brew anyhow we bothmade it to heathrow.
Cheers
Jim F

Brian Cloke
28th December 2008, 06:04
Yes I remember that tragic explosion well. I was third engineer on board
the MV Oakwood. We had been in Karachi and was aboard that ill fated ship
to change reading material with some of the engineers.
We were about two days ahead of her on the run to the gulf.
Cheers.
Brian.

ELLIOT HANNAH
6th March 2009, 12:40
My Father Captain Norman Hannah Was Master Of Stanvac Japan When She Blew Up.

I Was 6 At The Time & Any More Information Would Be Of Great Interest

Thanks

Elliot

Jim F
9th March 2009, 22:41
Drydock Mitsubishi Shipyard Nagasaki 195712698

12699

ELLIOT HANNAH
10th March 2009, 13:31
My father was Captain Norman Hannah who was killed in the explosion.
Can anybody give me more information as to what actually happened and if anybody who sailed with him is contactable.

Thank you

Elliot.

ELLIOT HANNAH
10th March 2009, 17:39
Hello Chris

My Father Was Captain Norman Hannah Killed In The Explosion On Japan 19 Oct 58. I Was 6 At The Time.

If You Can, Please Tell Me More About What Happened & If You Have Any More Photos And If Any Of The Crew Are Still Contactable

Thank You
Elliot Hannah

Ian F
4th April 2009, 17:48
I was Third Mate on the Japan Paid off 10th October 1958.Had sailed 18 and half months. Visited your Mum on 23rd ? October 1958.On Clarkston /Muirend road.I had just been married on 14th October and currently living in Giffnock.I remember a wee boy who had a Pelmans Puppet and which was all tangled,and I was able to fix it.Your Mum was a very brave ,dignified,strong and caring lady.She had been to visit both Mums of the two Cadets who had been lost on the Japan,despite her own loss. PM me and I will give you my telephone number and we can talk more Ian F

Ian F
4th April 2009, 18:18
Brian,Sorry,no offence,its just that I am a total,number one,eck dum calass,nit picker,but the Japan never called into Karachi.Did any of the engineers give you their names ? (Old happy far off days..Boy am I getting old) Ian F

Ian F
4th April 2009, 18:35
Brian I really am getting old... Stanvac Karachi ?Should have known..Too much gin. Cheers Ian F

Topherjohn
4th April 2009, 23:34
Hello Chris
My Father Was Captain Norman Hannah Killed In The Explosion On Japan 19 Oct 58. I Was 6 At The Time.
If You Can, Please Tell Me More About What Happened & If You Have Any More Photos And If Any Of The Crew Are Still Contactable
Thank You
Elliot Hannah
Elliot
Sorry I didn't pick this up earlier. I have I think posted all my photos and newspaper cuttings in SN gallery at http://www.shipsnostalgia.com/gallery/showphoto.php/photo/114622/ppuser/20641 . Have a look at these first if you haven't already done so, then get back to me. I probably haven't anything much to add although one of cousins (eldest son of Capt Howard Pilley) was over in the UK last year and we did chat for a while about the Japan explosion.
Kind regards - Chris

JIM C
14th April 2009, 20:40
Thanks Jim,

My Uncle never spoke much of his time at sea and finished his working life as the maintainence man at Littlewoods supermarket in Aberdeen.

Jim

JIM C
14th April 2009, 20:58
I found some photos of my Uncle there before the ship was launched.
Will scan and post them.
Jim

Topherjohn
25th September 2009, 22:27
Does anyone know how the Escape was reconstructed from the Stanvac Japan which blew up 160 miles off Karachi in 1958? Perhaps the stern section was retained/ rebuilt with a completely new forward section added? Perhaps everything for'ard of the after section was repaired. If you have any information I'd be interested to know.
I've also posted this message in the Stanvac/ Mobil tankers thread.

Cisco
25th September 2009, 22:57
Hello John,
I went aboard Escape once in LM. Engineers accomodation was original, four new decks were added above that. I don't know if they retained the focsle but it was undamaged and still had that typical Esso/Stanvac sheer. It would have been modifed however as it was raised one deck's worth. Midbody was all new and also raised so she had a flush poop profile. I think all the work was done in Europe somewhere. I was told once that the damage was the most severe ever suffered by a ship that did not sink. Photo here http://www.shipsnostalgia.com/gallery/showphoto.php/photo/50930/ppuser/11313
Cheers
Frank

Topherjohn
26th September 2009, 10:18
Frank
Thank you for the information about the rebuilt Japan. I'll pass this on the my friend who was interested as he'd sailed as cadet in one of P&O's tankers ss Garonne in 1959/60. The story and photos of the damaged Japan is an article of great interest on our new Warsash Association website at www.warsashassociation.net.
If by any chance you come across or are in touch with any ex-Warsash cadets please will you mention the website to them? We're in the throes of a successful recruiting campaign at present, about 75 new members so far in 2009.
Incidentally I'm Chris - Topherjohn is be a bit misleading I know. We messaged a few time last year. Topherjohn (from ChrisTOPHER JOHN) was my mother's nickname for me as a child.
Chris

Cisco
28th September 2009, 03:14
Apologies...senior moment...

Topherjohn
28th September 2009, 11:10
Apologies...senior moment...
That's OK - I have a few of those myself!
Chris

Pam Nichol
25th October 2009, 18:19
Does anyone recall the catastrophic explosion aboard mv Stanvac Japan in the India Ocean in October 1958? Nineteen crew members died including the Master. The whole bridge accommodation was lifted and deposited in the sea alongside the hull following an explosion in the 'midships pumproom.
I have further information and some dramatic photos (one attached) if anyone is interested.
Chris Clarke

My auntie's fiance Eddie Smith from newcastle upon tyne England was killed due to this explosion, Did you know him or were you aware of him at all?

maljess
25th November 2009, 02:11
just came across this site i must contribute to this discussion
i joined the stanvac australia september1957 as a junior engineer
captain pilley was the master and joe clarke was the chief engineer i remember the stanvac japan incident well. we were on a voyage from bandar mashur to durban when we heard the awful news.the conclusion was the butterworth tank cleaning process built up static and caused the explosion
the butterworth cleaning process was ceased throughout the fleet.i have some photographs of the stanvac japan after the incident in bombay harbour

Topherjohn
25th November 2009, 11:00
just came across this site i must contribute to this discussion
i joined the stanvac australia september1957 as a junior engineer
captain pilley was the master and joe clarke was the chief engineer i remember the stanvac japan incident well. we were on a voyage from bandar mashur to durban when we heard the awful news.the conclusion was the butterworth tank cleaning process built up static and caused the explosion
the butterworth cleaning process was ceased throughout the fleet.i have some photographs of the stanvac japan after the incident in bombay harbour
Thanks for your contribution. I'd certainly be interested to see your Bombay photos. You'll find the ones I have at SN gallery at http://www.shipsnostalgia.com/gallery/showphoto.php/photo/50929/ppuser/11313 (http://www.shipsnostalgia.com/gallery/showphoto.php/photo/114622/ppuser/20641) and adjacent photos.
Chris

Cisco
25th November 2009, 16:10
I thought Stanvac Australia was Gulf to Melbourne at the time. Arrived a few days after the event.

philtas7310
16th January 2010, 06:25
Does anyone recall the catastrophic explosion aboard mv Stanvac Japan in the India Ocean in October 1958? Nineteen crew members died including the Master. The whole bridge accommodation was lifted and deposited in the sea alongside the hull following an explosion in the 'midships pumproom.
I have further information and some dramatic photos (one attached) if anyone is interested.
Chris Clarke


I was 8th engineer aboard Stanvac Mariner when both vessels were docked in Bombay October 1958. Each vessel sailed within hours of each other with the Mariner bound for Tandjong Uban and the Japan returning to the Gulf to re-load. The shocking news was divulged by our master at breakfast on the day of the tragedy. We had been fraternising with some of the Japan's crew aboard the day before.

chuckgregg
25th November 2010, 11:20
Hi not long ago I was told about Ships Nostalgia , I have found it very interesting reading the postings about the Stanvac Japan. As an ex Stanvac man [ Bangkok & Canberra] I try to maintain contact with some of the lads, recently talked with Hamish Curran now 80 years young on skype who sailed on the [Japan Niarobi Canberra] and now lives in Tasmania , Jim Foreman [ Bangkok & I think Japan] I met recently briefly in Edinboro he now lives in Canada , Davy Alexander I see regular for a curry and a pint [ Japan & Niarobi ] . I read a post about Eddie Smith well just before the fate of the Japan we met up in Durban and had good old night out he told me he ws going home to get married and if I was home in time he wanted me to be his best man.Stanvac was full of guys who served thier apprenticeships at the Wallsend Slipway Stan Martin Vin Butler J. Garrick to name a few. I would like to hear from any still alive and kicking for a trip down memory lane. My kindest regards to all

chuckgregg
25th November 2010, 11:32
Most of the engineers who sailed on the Japan had nothing good to say about Japanese engineering in fact they had a song "Misubushi feed pimps Joto Nia" no good .The remark about the anode causing the spark was given at the enquiry I have often thought it was metal bracket holding the magnesium anode that caused the spark , Eddie Smith and others were playing table tennis in midship section when they were killed as far as I now nobody was killed in the aft section of the ship. The quote was Stanvac Japan servived the largest explosion of a British Ship.

Billieboy
25th November 2010, 13:27
Chuck, I remember, many years ago, seeing a BoT demonstration, with a spark proof hammer hitting a rusty block of steel covered with aluminium foil in an explosive atmosphere, the result was frightening.

Basically it doesn't matter what material hits what, if there is rust and an explosive atmosphere then you'll get a bang, as even if the rust doesn't cause a spark, there could be a static discharge giving an even better spark. Thus the requirement for IG systems on tankers.

chuckgregg
25th November 2010, 17:40
Hi Billie for jogging my memory about the static causing a spark , after the Japan incedent we had to remove the anodes from the tanks this was not a pleasant job with the memories of our shipmates and friends not long dead , I don't recall if the Butterworth hot water tank washing system was ever included but the rotating head and the hotwater jets may have contributed . Gas freeing was carried out by using windsails [long tubes which guided the air into the tanks not a very efficient way of gas freeing the tanks , as I knew from engine room vents we often rang the bridge to find out where the breeze was if there was one and we would turn them from the engine room.

Billieboy
25th November 2010, 19:41
There was one explosion which was put down to the nozzle of a butterworth machine coming off, unfortunately I cannot remember which it was. However, if a nozzle did come off then a spark would be generated when it hit anything rusty, or a corroded anode, for instance.

rodhaigh
9th December 2010, 16:12
I was an 18 yr old apprentice on the 'British Power' on voyage from the Gulf to the Bay of Bengal when we passed the 'Stanvac japan' just after her accident.
A salutory lesson for a young lad learning his trade! Unfortunately I didn't own a camera at that time, so the only pix I've seen are the ones in thepublic domain.

Peter Jackson
25th December 2010, 21:36
Joined S.T. Stanvac Japan July 1956, (first ship) Ch.Eng. Arthur Greener and one of the best I ever sailed with. We were in the last convoy South before the Canal was closed. Spent ten years with Stanvac/Mobil.
Sailed twice with Capt. Pilley and twice with Capt. Holden also two other Captains from Aussie, Capt. Lewino and Capt. Winton-Dunn (and Peggy). Does anyone remember her??
Peter Jackson

Horacedebuccyjones
19th September 2013, 13:41
I was in the area in the Indian Ocean when the Stanvac Japan exploded. I first saw her adrift with the midships housing missing and the deck rolled up like a sardine can. Memory wears dim with age, have I got it rite?. Prayers were said on the bridge and probably all over the ship on. The tanker British Knight GWTB BP. It was an advertisment from hell which left an indelible imprint on the mind, especially crews who were working on similar vessels with similar cargos which I was. The previous tanker I was on The STS Caprinus HOWK Shell Tanker was about the same size. The next time I saw her was in Bombay harbour off Butcher Island. Then again, I saw her going up the Red Sea in a very heavy sea at nite with about 30 foot swell and blowing a good gale. A tug forward and a tug aft under tow. Making about 3 or 4 knots and we were making about 8 or 9 knots I couldn't miss the opertunity to chat to the lead tug on the aldis lamp as we slowly passed one another He working me from a mast lite. Because of the swell I had to wait for him to reach the crest of the wave each time before we could transmit. Dutch tugs going to Holland.