British Crown

Graham Wallace
24th July 2006, 05:36
Does anyone know what happened to the wreckage of the British Crown that exploded at Umm Said 20th August 1966 and was abandoned in Jan 1967.

If you have any information whatsoever about the incident or personnel involved I would be interested to hear it.

I have been researching the incident now for 4 years but feel there is still more information around.

Graham Wallace

24th July 2006, 11:49
Found at
David Edge wrote ...
The "British Crown" caught fire and exploded while loading at Umm Said ( Musay’id ) on 20
August 1966 when almost fully loaded with crude for Kwinana. 18 crew and
the mooring supervisor were killed, 41 survivors were winched off by
helicopters. Blazing from stem to stern the "British Crown" was towed from
her berth the following day and beached. The fire was not extinguished
until 25 October. The forepart of the hulk was later reported to have been
sunk. According to Lloyds' "Modern Shipping Disasters" the fire began in
the Engine Room but I seem to recall that suspicion centered on the
'midships ventilation fans igniting gas as tanks were 'topped off'.
I see your query at
I mention this in case it may bring any more answers

Photo fo British Bulldog ( sister ship ) at Falmouth on

Best Wishes

Blade Fisher
10th September 2006, 13:07
Hello again Graham,

Yes I looked at this a few years ago as my father missed this only to cop it four years later. I do have some old photocopy photographs of the wreck. It was still nearby in the spring of 1970 as the Thorland berthed at Umm Said and a party went over to have a look. Somewhere I read the authorities salvaged the wreck but can't remember where I read that.

Graham Wallace
22nd March 2007, 18:53
As a follow up to my request for information about the British Crown it seems that she was floated ashore using large floatation devices ( Bladders) or something similar and the cut up for scrap for a local steelyard. This was about 1982/83 and the rumour had it that a Japanese entreprenure made himself a Million Pounds?. I presume this was in preparation for the expansion of the Umm Said Terminal.
This information came from the son of the pilot who was due to move the Crown into her loading position the day before. A fellow pilot (Captain Harris) requested a schedule change and was subsequently killed aboard her the morning of August 20th 1966.
Graham Wallace

24th March 2007, 19:25
Hi Graham,
I sailed with the 3/O and Lecky before they sadly joined the Crown and lost their lives. I remember them well although it's a long time ago: I have pictures of them both. I also sailed with the 1st Officer Officer before he joined.

12th April 2007, 21:42
My father was Captain Derek Harris - pilot of SS Bristish Crown 1966 that exploded.
I would like to hear form anyone that knew him.

Graham Wallace
22nd April 2007, 18:02
My father was Captain Derek Harris - pilot of SS Bristish Crown 1966 that exploded.
I would like to hear form anyone that knew him.

I know the skipper of the Crown, please send me an email
Graham wallace