Wreck - Baron GautschThe war caught the Austrian Merchant fleet by surprise, but not unprepared.
The ships that were transporting otherwise cheerful summer visitors along the Adriatic coast to the emerging resorts, luxury liners, who received the quick connections between Trieste and the major ports of the Mediterranean upright, the line of steamers, which worried the regular movement of overseas and rich and poor alike sure, although with quite different convenience, brought to their destination: They all took almost overnight a new task.
Merchant ship officers and pilots were in the service of the Navy, almost all of them were reserve officers.
The ships were given a coat of paint, Whitch should make them invisible, or at least less visible: white ships, cruise music, and festive meals, all of this glory was now gone.
At five in the afternoon clock with a smooth sea and sunshine, the vessel sank, belonging to the Austrian Lloyd 'Baron Gautsch' on the way back from Cattaro to Trieste in the vicinity of Rovinj.
Of the more than 500 passengers embarked after, drowned about 330, mostly women and children.
The ship went by mistake off course by the second officer’s and got into the minefield of their own navy and hit a mine. At approximately 15.45 a clock in the afternoon there was a sudden violent crash. The ship made a strong jolt, so that many people fell to the ground.
A panick situation accurded. Everybody went to the lifeboats, several of which could not be lowered because the ropes where involved, and it was difficult to raise for the already overcrowded boats .
Therefore, many jumped into the sea where they were saved by torpedo boats. Within seven minutes the ship quickly sank to the left side. According to the passengers the ship’s crew had little interest to rescue the passengers, and took their own safety first. The first rescue boat had been largely occupied by the crew.
Of the over 500 passengers and 66 crew were rescued 190 people, 68 found dead, drowned The rest of the bodies were never found. Was there carelessness or sloppiness in the game? Who would decide that today.
The people who died on the 'Baron Gautsch' rest today at the naval cemetery at the former main naval port of Pula, in addition to the dead sailors, NCOs and officers of the Navy. You should remember them, during a holiday on the Adriatic before they will be gone forever to the ravages of time.
The wreck today.
Now the 'Baron Gautsch' is one of the finest wrecks in the Adriatic. It is located 35 minutes from our dive center. Our Croatia Colleges Sinisa has discoverred this some years ago.
The wreck is blocked by the Croatian government for divers. We are one of the few dive centers that have a license to dive into this cultural monument. A dive to the 'Baron Gautsch' is certainly one of the most beautiful experiences of our time. But not only the 'Baron Gautsch' invites you to dive.
We offer many other wrecks that have a diver's heart beat faster.
Text Source: Internet