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ESSO International Tankers 1930-1939
Heinrich v. Riedemann - (1935-1942)
See also : ALONE AND UNARMED & German Records off the Attack on the MS "Heinrich v. Riedemann"

MS "Heinrich v. Riedemann" which was torpedoed, burned and sunk.
"Heinrich v. Riedemann".

Home Port: Panama City, R.P.
Company: Panama Transport Co. (Standard Oil of N.J.)
Master: Andrew Weiler
Built: Vegesack, Germany 1930
Gross Tons: 11,020
Dimensions: 542' x 70' x 39'
Cargo Capacity: 139,515 barrels

The Panamanian flag tanker, MS HEINRICH v. RIEDEMANN,was torpedoed by the German U-66 (Richard Zapp) at 2320 ship time on April 16, 1942 in position 11-55 N./ 63-47 W., while en route alone from Port of Spain, Trinidad to Aruba with a cargo of 127,041 barrels of Crude oil which had been loaded at La Guira, Venezuela. The ship was un-armed.
On board was a crew of 44 men including the Master. All hands were saved.
The ship left La Guira at 1530 on April 14th, proceeding first to Port of Spain for orders. Left that port at 0755 on April 16th in a small convoy. At 1325 the convoy dispersed and the RIEDEMANN proceeded alone according to or-ders.

At 2320 on the same day (April 16th), a torpedo struck the tanker on the port side in the way of #6 tank. The port diesel was damaged and stopped by the explosion. The steering gear was also wrecked. The Master then ordered the starboard engine stopped as the ship was going around in circles. Oil was pouring out of #6 tank.
The ship was ordered abandoned 20 minutes after the torpedo struck. Three boats were launched, #1-3-4. About 0040 on April 17th, another torpedo hit setting the ship on fire which went out at 0105. At 0155 a 3rd torpedo struck and set the ship afire again. The ship finally disappeared about 0305.

All 44 survivors got away in 3 boats. Fifteen men including the Master were in #1 boat. Ten men were in #3 boat and 14 men were in #4 boat. #1 boat landed at Blanquilla Island at 1900 on the 17th. On April 20th, the SS MARICAIBO picked up the survivors in this boat and landed them at Caracas at 0600 on April 22nd. Those in #3 and #4 boats were picked up by the Norwegian freighter KARMT at 0730 and landed them at Trinidad at 1100 on April 18th.

U-66 (Seehausen) was sunk off Cape Verde Islands in position 17-17 N./32-29 W.) by the USS BUCKLEY (DE 51) and aircraft from the USS BLOCK ISLAND (CVE-21). 24 men from the U-66 were lost and 36 taken prisoner.

Heinrich v. Riedemann
IMO No.:
Torpedoed and sunk in 1942 April 16, near Trinidad.
Bremer-Vulcan Schiffbau und Machinenfabrik, Vegesack.
Panama Transport Comp.
Engine type:
2 Diesel Engines, 5300 BHP.
Sisterships are Peter Hurll, J. A. Mowinckel, F. H. Bedford Jr. and J. H. Senior.

Home Port: Panama City, R.P.
Company: Panama Transport Co. (Standard Oil of N.J.)
Master: Andrew Weiler
Built: Vegesack, Germany 1930
Gross Tons: 11,020
Dimensions: 542' x 70' x 39'
Cargo Capacity: 139,515 barrels.

Additional Info by Starke & Schell Registers :

HEINRICH v. RIEDEMANN - 1930       DZ          2M (aft)     (12)
12,175 Grt for Baltisch-Amerik. Petroleum Import G.m.b.H. (Waried Tankschiff. Rhed.), Danzig     521.1 x 70.2
Tanker built by Bremer Vulkan, Vegesack     (11)     #694
1935 - Panama Transport Co., Panama    PA
Torp. and sunk by U 66, 17 April 1942, in 11.55N-63.47W, voy. La Guaira - Aruba, crude oil.

Additional information from :

Name: Heinrich von Riedemann
Type: Motor tanker
Tonnage: 11.020 tons
Completed: 1930 - Bremer Vulkan, Vegesack
Owner: Panama Transport Co (Standard Oil Co), Panama
Homeport: Panama
Date of attack: 17 Apr, 1942
Nationality: Panaman
Fate: Sunk by U-66 (Richard Zapp)
Position: 11.55N, 63.47W - Grid ED 8617
- See location on a map -
Complement: 44 (0 dead and 44 survivors).
Convoy: -
Route: La Guira, Venezuela (14 Apr) - Port of Spain (16 Apr) - Aruba
Cargo: 127.041 barrels of crude oil
History: -
Notes on loss:
At 05.23 hours on 17 Apr, 1942, the unescorted and unarmed Heinrich von Riedemann (Master Andrew Weiler) was hit by one
torpedo from U-66 on the port side in the way of # 6 tank. The explosion wrecked the steering gear and the port diesel engine. The
ship was pouring oil from the tank while steering circles until the other engine was stopped. 20 minutes after the hit, the ship was
abandoned in three lifeboats. At 06.40 hours, another torpedo hit the ship setting her on fire, which went out after 25 minutes. At
07.55 hours, a third torpedo struck and set the ship on fire again. The tanker finally sank at 09.05 hours.
The boat of the master containing 15 men landed at Blanquilla Island at 01.00 hours on 18 April, the survivors were picked up on 20
April by the steam merchant Maricaibo and landed at Caracas two days later. 29 men in two lifeboats were picked up by the Karmt
at 13.30 hours on 17 April and landed at Trinidad one day later.