UM EL FAROUD 

DIVE MALTA SUBWAY ROZI 2

 

Location: Blue Grotto, Wied iz-Zurrieq
Maximum Depth: 35m
Constructed: 1969
Type: Tanker
Weight (tons): 10000 grt
Dimensions: 110m X 16m
Builders: Smith Dock Co. Ltd., Middlesbrough
Last Owner: General National Maritime Transport Company, Tripoli

The ill-fated tanker Um El Faroud was scuttled on Wednesday, 2nd September 1998, three and a half years after the explosion that killed nine dockyard workers in Grand Harbour, Valletta. This tragic event shocked the people of Malta. Her final voyage started in the early hours of the morning, arriving off Wied iz-Zurrieq around 9:30hrs.

It then took over three hours to get her into position, due to a moderate south-easterly swell. At about 12:30hrs the special valves that were fitted for the scuttling were opened and the ship started to take in water, then around 15:30hrs she sank quietly beneath the surface, down onto the sand at 35m.

Currently she is upright on the seabed with the bow separated from the stern just in front of the bridge. In the centre of the bridge, by the window, there is a brass plaque in memory of the dockyard workers who sadly lost their lives.

The 3,147 gross ton vessel is a single screw motor tanker, built by Smith Dock Co. Ltd., Middlesbrough, England in 1969. The port of registry was Tripoli and owned by General National Maritime Transport. The engine room, bridge and accommodation are arranged aft. The cargo section is sub divided into four centre tanks and four wing tanks on each side. The overall length is 110 metres and the breadth is 16 metres. Still in place are the propeller and the rudder.