Connect with us

World

Phuket Gazette: SS Gairsoppa has silver lining

Published

 on 

PHUKET MEDIA WATCH

– World news selected by Gazette editors for Phuket’s international community

48 tons of silver recovered from WWII merchant ship
Phuket Gazette / News Wires

PHUKET: Odyssey Marine Exploration on Wednesday announced it has recovered approximately 48 tons of silver bullion from a British cargo ship that sank off the Irish coast during World War II.

The bullion was recovered from the SS Gairsoppa, a 412-foot steel-hulled British cargo ship that sank in February 1941, at a depth of approximately three miles, some 300 miles off the Irish coast in the Atlantic Ocean.

In total, the deep-ocean exploration company said it has recovered 1,203 silver bars or approximately 1.4 million troy ounces of silver so far, which has been transported to a secure facility in the United Kingdom (UK), as the project is under contract with the UK Department for Transport. The current approximate value of the find is US$38 million.

According to Odyssey, the recovery marks a record-breaking operation that has so far produced the heaviest and deepest recovery of precious metals from a shipwreck.

However, research indicates that more silver is expected to be found since the number of silver bars recovered so far only represents approximately 43 per cent of the insured silver bars, or approximately 20 per cent of the total silver cargo. In addition, an estimated 600,000 ounces of insured silver is also expected to be found on the SS Mantola, a second modern shipwreck recovery project being conducted in conjunction with the Gairsoppa project.

Serial numbers and other markings on the silver bars recovered to date all match the contemporary insured silver cargo documentation, therefore, it is anticipated that the entire insured amount is aboard. However, it is unknown at this point whether there is additional uninsured silver on the site.

During the War, the UK Government insured privately owned cargo under their War Risk Insurance program.

The SS Gairsoppa sailed with several convoys, before joining Convoy SL 64. Running low on fuel, she left the convoy and headed for Galway, Ireland, but was torpedoed and sunk by a German U-boat. The wreck of the ship was located in 2011, and it is estimated that the total value of recovery could exceed US$200 million (source: Wikimedia).

After making an insurance payment of approximately 325,000 pounds sterling (1941 value) to the owners of the silver cargo lost aboard the Gairsoppa, the UK Government became the owners of the insured cargo. As some sources, including ‘Lloyd’s War Losses’, indicate a total silver cargo worth 600,000 pounds sterling (1941 value) lost aboard the Gairsoppa, there may have been additional government-owned silver cargo aboard that would have been self-insured.

Under the terms of the agreement, which follows standard commercial practices, Odyssey bears the risk of search and recovery and retains 80% of the net salved value of the Gairsoppa silver cargo after recovering its expenses.

— Phuket Gazette Editors

 

Get more from The Thaiger

Join the conversation and have your say on Thailand news published on The Thaiger.

Thaiger Talk is our new Thaiger Community where you can join the discussion on everything happening in Thailand right now.

Please note that articles are not posted to the forum instantly and can take up to 20 min before being visible. Click for more information and the Thaiger Talk Guidelines.

Archiving articles from the Phuket Gazette circa 1998 - 2017. View the Phuket Gazette online archive and Digital Gazette PDF Prints.

Follow Thaiger by email:

Kanchanaburi10 mins ago

Kanchanaburi school director found dead in canal

Pattaya1 hour ago

Small children in Pattaya learn to get help when locked in hot cars

Chiang Mai2 hours ago

Heavy rains collapse part of Chiang Mai’s ancient city wall

Sponsored2 days ago

From regulation to cannabis delivery, here’s what you need to know about cannabis in Thailand

Events2 hours ago

6-hour whiskey drinking contest draws criticism

Pattaya3 hours ago

Pattaya official urges mayor to expand legal nightlife zone

Thailand4 hours ago

Things you can do in Thailand during the rainy season

Join the conversation on the Thaiger Talk forums today!
Indonesia4 hours ago

Earthquake in Indonesia felt throughout southern Thailand

Patong5 hours ago

Foreign women rescued from rip current in Patong

Thailand21 hours ago

Woman smashes up her 1.5 million baht car over feud with Ford Thailand

Bangkok22 hours ago

1.8 billion baht in donations at the Erawan shrine in 2022

Phuket23 hours ago

Phuket welcomes 4 million tourists in 8 months

Tourism24 hours ago

Carnival Magic theme park opens in Phuket to fanfare

Video24 hours ago

Ask the Thais | Stereotypes, Racial Profiling, and Discrimination

Coronavirus (Covid-19)1 day ago

Thailand watching BQ.1.1 variant as Covid rules ease

Thailand1 day ago

Military conscription in Russia could benefit Thailand’s economy

Thailand1 year ago

Morning Top Stories Thailand | Police to end protests, Human Trafficking | September 14

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Thai Airways in rehab, All go for Songkran | March 4

Tourism2 years ago

Phuket’s nightlife. Yes, bars and clubs are still open | VIDEO

Phuket2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Covid passport talks, Thai Airways heads to court | March 2

Tourism2 years ago

Phuket Thai food treats you need to try | VIDEO

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Bars, pubs and restaurants ‘sort of’ back to normal | Feb 23

Tourism2 years ago

In search of Cat & Dog Cafés in Phuket Town | VIDEO

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Gambling crackdown, Seafood market to reopen, Vlogger challenge | Jan 21

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Covid testing for visas, Business impact, Vaccine approval | January 19

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Weekend Bangkok bombs, Thailand fires, Covid update | January 18

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Stray car on runway, Indonesian quake, 300 baht tourist fee | January 15

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Governor off respirator, sex-trafficking arrest, condo prices falling | January 14

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Chinese vaccine, Thailand ‘drug hub’, Covid update | January 13

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Bangkok may ease restrictions, Phuket bar curfew, Vaccine roll out | January 12

Thailand2 years ago

Thailand News Today | Covid latest, Cockfights closed down, Bryde’s Whale beached | January 11

Trending