Friday, May 1, 2009

Royal Dutch Navy Submarine HNMS K XI (N53)

The Royal Dutch Navy submarine, HNMS K.XI (N53), arrived in Fremantle on March 22, 1945 after spending most of the war as an asdic training submarine for the British and Indian navies.

After being decommissioned in Fremantle on April 10, 1945 K.XI was handed over to the RAN for transfer to the Commonwealth Disposal Committee on June 21. K.XI was partially stripped in the Swan River HMAS Leeuwin II where its 3.5" deck cannon was removed and presented to the Fresh Water Bay Yacht Club.

Later she was, towed down river to Fremantle Harbour and was scheduled for further stripping. however, whilst moored outboard of another vessel at North Quay she sank overnight because a valve or gauge was left open.

It took six weeks to raise the hull and further strip it down before K.XI was finally towed out to the “Ships Graveyard” site some 12 nm west of Rottnest Island and scuttled September, 1946.

The submarine now lies at approximately [32 03S, 115 22 E] in around 80m of seawater.

Photos: copyright Kevin Lock / Saxon Fogarty, & G.D. Horneman

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