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The Wreck of the Jane Douglas, 1901






A British ship, called the "Jane Douglas," of the Port of Lyttelton, on the 10th day of August 1901, ran aground at Okura, Westland, New Zealand.

The "Jane Douglas" is schooner-rigged. Her port of registry Lyttelton, her registered tonnage 75. The vessel was not insured.

The Board of Trade inquirey found that the official number of said ship called the "Jane Douglas" is 37,110, of which Christian Theodor Julius Andersen is master, who holds a certificate of competency as master, home trade, No. 5331, issued by the Marine Department of New Zealand, and which ship belonged to William Keech, of Kurrara, storekeeper.

That the loss or damage appears by the evidence to have been caused by becoming stranded on the South Spit, Okura River, Westland, New Zealand.

Damage done was to two plates, broken, three damaged, and rivets started. No lives were lost through the casualty.

The steamer "Jane Douglas" became stranded on the South Spit of the Okura River on 10th August, 1901, through taking the bar when it was dangerous. This was the captain's first trip.

The weather was thick and hazy, and it was difficult to distinguish the signals shown by the harbourmaster. The captain and the mate understood that the practice was that when, at high water, the beacons remained up it was to be taken that the bar was safe. Acting on this, as the signals were not distinguishable, and as the beacons remained up, an effort was made at high tide to effect an entrance. The harbourmaster was unable to decide till it was high tide whether the bar would be workable, and, being then engaged in trying to make the flag indicating "bar dangerous" visible in the then prevailing wind, which blew from the shore towards the ship, he was unable to reach the beacons in time to lower them, and no blame is attachable to him.



See also:

  • Ships named Douglas



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    Last modified: Monday, 25 March 2024