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R.A.N. to the rescue in China Sea

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' ' ' Navy Public Relations,

. 194



An Australian warship is steaming for Hong Kong with

the survivors of a merchant vessel that ran aground this week

on a reef in the Chi-na. Sea.

The Royal Australian Navy frigate, H.M.A.S. QUIBERON,

sped to the aid of the 10,000 ton freighter, S.S. TUSCANY, which

was stranded on tiny Ladd Reef, 300 miles north-west of Borneo.

Details of the rescue were given in Canberra today by

the Minister for the Navy, Senator Gorton.

He said an S.O.S. from the TUSCANY was picked up in

Singapore on Monday, and QUIBERON left at high speed to cover

the 660 miles to Ladd Reef.

QUIBERON arrived at the reef on Tuesday afternoon, and

the captain, Commander V.A. Parker, of Sydney, ordered an immediate

start on the rescue operation. :

In heavy weather, QUIBERON1s boat made her way to the

stricken vessel to take off the first survivors. Night fell, and

the final hazardous trip to the reef was completed in darkness,

Thirty-one members of the all-Chinese crew were taken aboard QUIBERON,

and the Australian warship supplied food to a salvage party remaining

in the freighter.

The warship stood-by throughout the night as a salvage

tug, "SALVONIA", tried unsuccessfully to drag TUSCANY off the reef.

The frigate then set course for Hong Kong yesterday morning, and is

due with the survivors at the end of the week.■

This was QUIBERON1s second'rescue operation since beginning

duty with the British Commonwealth Strategic Reserve in September.

Together with her sister ship, QUEENBOROUGH, she saved the survivors

of the Panamanian steamer, KAWI, which sank in a China Sea stor^

during October. -

20th December, 1962