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U-288 under attack

U-288 under attack

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U-288 under attack 1 of 6

This picture shows the sinking of U-288 on 3 April 1945 at the hands of aircraft from HMS Activity and HMS Tracker. U-288 was sunk by a combination of rocket and depth charges attacks south of Bear Island, Norway.

Pictures from David Tolley

German submarine U-288

German submarine U-288 was a Type VIIC U-boat of the Nazi German Kriegsmarine during World War II.

The submarine was laid down on 7 September 1942 at the Bremer Vulkan yard at Bremen-Vegesack as 'werk' 53. She was launched on 15 May 1943 and commissioned on 26 June under the command of Oberleutnant Willy Meyer. Ώ]

She did not sink or damage any ships.

She was sunk by British aircraft of the Fleet Air Arm from two escort carriers in April 1944.

Aircraft losses sorted by boat

This aircraft failed to return from a U-boat sweep in the eastern Mediterranean.

This aircraft failed to return from anti-submarine patrol

08.17 hrs, Mediterranean, NW of Algiers: flak hits to the cockpit area and starboard engine during the initial strafing run caused four depth charges dropped by the aircraft to fall wide by 80 to 250m (87 -273 yds), causing only light damage. The aircraft attempted to reach the coast some 50 miles (80 km) distant, but had to ditch only three minutes after the attack. The crew of four were rescued from their dinghy in the afternoon of the same day by a Walrus flying boat (700 Sqdn FAA, pilot Sub Lt Neil Fuller) escorted by Hudsons from 500 and 608 Sqdns RAF).

The sinking of U-131
0925hrs, west of Rabat, Morocco: while shadowing convoy HG-76 the boat was sighted and forced to dive by a Martlet fighter of the British escort carrier HMS Audacity. HMS Stork (Cdr F.J. "Johnnie" Walker) immediately raced to the spot together with four other escorts. About one hour later, HMS Stanley got an asdic contact and HMS Pentstemon carried out several depth charge attacks on U-131, causing serious damage and forcing her to surface due to chlorine gas from the batteries at 1247hrs. Unable to dive, Baumann tried to escape at full speed on the surface. After 20 minutes, a Martlet strafed the boat, but was brought down by flak and crashed into the sea, killing the pilot. In the meantime the escorts began shelling U-131 from a distance of about 7 nautical miles, scoring several hits as they closed in. The boat returned fire at HMS Blankney, but without scoring any hits, and was eventually scuttled by the crew at 1330hrs.

This was the first aircraft shot down by a U-boat in the war.

This was the only airship shot down during WWII. For more information see this page.

09.29 hrs, Bay of Biscay north of Corunna: four Mosquito aircraft (three from 307 Polish Sqdn RAF and one from 410 Sqdn RCAF) attacked a group of five outbound boats (U-68, U-155, U-159, U-415 and U-634). The leading Mosquito first strafed U-68 and then U-155, but its port engine stopped after being hit by flak and the aircraft was forced to return to base at Predannack, Cornwall, where it made a belly landing. A Mosquito piloted by F/O J. Pelka then made an attack run, but without firing, and the remaining aircraft were held off by an intense barrage of flak.
Five of the crew of U-155 were wounded, two badly. The boat returned to base with U-68, whose doctor was transferred to treat the wounded on the way.

On 4 May 1945, U-155 was en route with U-680 and U-1233 from Germany to Norway through the Little Belt when they were strafed by Mustang fighters of 126 Squadron which were escorting Beaufighters of the North Coates Strike Wing. The flight broke off the attack after the leading Mustang was shot down, killing the CO of the squadron.

U-564 was sunk in this attack. The aircraft had to ditch at sea.

The boat was attacked five times by three aircraft from the escort carrier USS Tripoli operating on ULTRA information west-southwest of the Cape Verde Islands and even escaped a Fido homing torpedo. At 19.40 hrs, an Avenger was shot down by AA fire, killing the crew of three men. This was the last escort carrier aircraft lost to U-boat action in the Atlantic.

17.13 hrs, south-west of Ireland: U-221 was attacked from low level by the Halifax, straddled by eight depth charges, and was seen to sink by the stern. The aircraft was hit by flak, and a fire in the starboard wing forced the pilot to ditch about three miles away. Two gunners were lost, but the remaining six aircrew survived and were rescued after 11 days by HMS Mahratta.

10.50 hrs, Bay of Biscay, outbound: The Halifax was forced to break off an initial attack by heavy flak, but then made a strafing attack from the bow and released six depth charges, which overshot the boat and detonated about 25m (82ft) astern. The detonations gave U-228 a severe shaking and wounded the II WO and one seaman. The Germans observed several AA hits on the aircraft (misidentified as a Lancaster) and saw it emit smoke before they dived. The Halifax and its crew of seven failed to return to base and presumably crashed shortly after this attack.

In the vicinity of convoy HX 237.

00.07 hrs, approx. 125 miles west of Ålesund, Norway: four days out from Bergen, U-241 was attacked by the Norwegian-crewed Catalina. Flak hits to the aircraft during the attack run apparently caused the depth charges to miss, but U-241 was sunk by another Catalina a few hours later. The starboard waist gunner was killed (Pty/O Kyrre D. Berg) and a large hole in the hull forced the pilot to beach the Catalina after landing on the River Tay, damaging it beyond repair.

23.12 hrs, Bay of Biscay, inbound: the boat was illuminated by Leigh Light and strafed by the Liberator. The Germans observed hits to the right wing from the 20mm AA guns and to the fuselage from the 37mm AA gun. Flames were seen coming from the bomb bay and one of the engines as the aircraft passed astern of U-256 at a height of 50m (55 yards), dropping six depth charges, and then crashed into the sea 500m (547 yards) away, killing the crew of ten. The boat was not damaged in the attack.

08.30 hrs, Bay of Biscay: the Whitley (misidentified as a Wellington) strafed the inbound U-256 and dropped two or three bombs that fell some 15m (50ft) astern. The Germans observed flak hits on the cockpit and saw the aircraft fly off very low leaving a smoke trail. Its crew sent an SOS and probably ditched. The crew of five was lost. U-256 was badly damaged and limped into Lorient the next day some damage to the deck was apparently caused by one of the aircraft propellers.

21.48 hrs, mid Atlantic: the boat saw an aircraft crash into the sea close by. U-256 had not fired at the aircraft, which apparently crashed due to pilot error while preparing for a low level attack. All six aircrew were lost.

One of the depth charges dropped by the aircaft exploded on contact with the boat, crippling the aircraft and forcing the crew to bail out. Only the pilot and one crewman were rescued by the British sloops HMS Erne and HMS Leith. U-259 was sunk.

1911hrs, NNE of the Azores: the Fortress made two strafing runs without dropping bombs. After dropping four depth charges ahead of the boat during a third run, the starboard inner engine was hit by flak and the aircraft crashed into the sea, killing all eight aircrew. U-270 ran into the detonations, damaging all bow torpedo tubes, the sonar and batteries, and was forced to return to base.

The boat reported successfully repulsing an aircraft attack with AA fire at 21.10hrs, but did not claim the aircraft shot down. However, the attacker was apparently Wellington N for Nan from Squadron 612, which reported engine trouble from this area at that time before going missing with the crew of six. U-283 was sunk by another Wellington the following day.

The boat was lost in this attack.

01.20 hrs, Bay of Biscay, outbound: U-311 shot down the Halifax (misidentified as a Flying Fortress) after being strafed and depth charged. The crew of eight were all lost.

Severe damage to U-boat. U-333 had already been hit by Australian Sunderland Y/10 the day before. Further damage from this attack forced her to return to La Pallice, France.

21.31 hrs, Bay of Biscay, outbound: the Wellington caught the lookouts unawares, but when the aircraft switched on the Leigh Light, it was brought down by flak and crashed in flames after passing over the boat, killing the six aircrew. Two of the four depth charges dropped actually hit U-333, but one broke up without detonating and the other bounced off, causing only light damage.
The same aircraft and crew had sunk U-268 on 19 Feb.

Bay of Biscay south of Brest. This is a possible match. Either this Sunderland or U Uncle from 228 Sqdn were shot down by U-333 on this day. (According to the book Wavetops at My Wingtips, it was 201/S, its demise being witnessed by the crew of a Canadian Catalina flying boat).

0958hrs, outer Bay of Biscay, inbound: although the boat was surprised by the Halifax, accurate AA fire during the attack run meant the stick of bombs fell wide, and only one detonating near the bow caused some light damage. The Halifax was hit in the outer starboard engine and fuselage and was seen to crash into the sea some distance away. Flight engineer Sgt H.C. Taylor, RAAF was rescued by U-338 and taken prisoner, the sole survivor of the crew of eight airmen.

Following two aircraft attacks on the boat the previous day, the Allies initiated a Swamp operation, and at 21.40 hrs Wellington "B for Baker" of 36 Sqdn RAF located U-343 SW of Cartagena. She was then attacked by a Wellington from 179 Sqdn piloted by W/C J.H. Greswell DFC, followed by a second aircraft from 179 Sqdn. Wellington R-Robert dropped six depth charges, but several AA hits set the port wing on fire and the aircraft crashed into the sea, killing five of the crew. Only the pilot survived, after being thrown clear. U-343 passed close to his dinghy twice, but the Germans did not take him prisoner because they had "more important things to do". He was picked up by HMS Active the next morning and later received the DFC.

The boat had already sustained damage in these attacks, but there was more to come, as a Catalina (202 Sqdn RAF, pilot F/L J. Finch) then continued the attack. The aircraft broke off the attack at 23.00 hrs, and only then because flak had damaged the port wing, fuselage and both fuel tanks and wounded the flight engineer. U-343, badly damaged and unable to dive, managed to escape in the darkness, with only one man wounded by strafing, and following repairs at sea managed to reach her new base at Toulon.

U-343 was attacked at 20.30 hrs, two days after passing the Straits of Gibraltar into the Mediterranean. The Wellington made a low level attack, dropping five depth charges which fell astern and missed, and was hit by flak in the port wing and caught fire. It was forced to ditch shortly afterwards, and the pilot and navigator were killed. The remaining four aircrew were rescued from their dinghy by ORP Slazak the next morning.

The sighting report from this aircraft led another Wellington (HF221, RAF Sqdn 36/M, pilot F/O J.T. Hutton) to the scene, which immediately attacked U-343. Its depth charges fell wide because the port engine was hit by flak and the aircraft became difficult to control, despite which it managed to return to Bone (now Annaba), Algeria and land safely.

Approx. 18.15 hrs, west of Oporto, Portugal: U-359 andU-466 both fired at the aircraft as it strafed them, and three bombs fell between the boats before they dived at 18.26 hrs. The Germans observed AA hits on the bomber, and it apparently crashed shortly after the attack, killing all ten aircrew. Both U-boats escaped unscathed

23.03 hrs, Bay of Biscay, outbound: after locating U-402 on radar British Wellington bomber MP791 (RAF Sqdn 172/Q, pilot F/O T. Armstrong) dropped six depth charges in a Leigh Light attack and then circled the boat after making a strafing run. At 23.13 hrs they observed another Wellington (Sqdn 172/D) making a Leigh Light attack and being shot down. Wellington Q-Queen was damaged when the port tyre burst on landing at Chivenor: unknown to the crew the undercarriage had been hit twice by flak. U-402 had hit both attackers and escaped undamaged.

05.42 hrs, Bay of Biscay north of Cape Ortegal, outbound: the Wellington made a strafing run and dropped four depth charges using the Leigh Light, but was hit by flak and crashed into the sea about 50m (55 yds) astern of U-415, killing the crew of six. Damage to U-415 forced her to return to base.

The sinking of U-417
The Flying Fortress began the attack at 11.10 hours in the Atlantic SE of Iceland. Despite AA hits to the nose, cockpit, mainplanes, bomb bay and rear turret, the pilot dropped his depth charges on target. Several survivors from U-417 were seen in the water after she sank, but none were rescued.

Thomson (CO of 206 Squadron) had to ditch shortly afterwards and all eight aircrew managed to get into one dinghy, although without supplies. On 14 June an American Catalina flying boat (USN VP-84/P-3, pilot Lt Douglas S. Vieira, USNR) attempted to land nearby, but crashed, and its crew of nine also found themselves adrift, in two rafts. While the crew of the Fortress was located and rescued the same day by a British Catalina (190 Sqdn RAF, pilot S/L J.A. Holmes, DFC), the Catalina crew was not found until five days later. There was only one survivor, the others having died of exposure.

09.55 hrs, outside the Bay of Biscay: The Catalina attacked a U-boat, probably the inbound U-418, which was lost shortly afterwards without reporting an attack. AA fire hit the bow of the aircraft during the attack run, killing the nose gunner and wounding two other crew, but the pilot carried on and dropped depth charges. The aircraft made it to base at Pembroke Dock, but the hull was holed, and it sank on landing. Later salvaged.

Could also have been U-413, U-629 or U-740.

Aircraft shot down on the Brest - La Pallice route.

Aircraft attack, aircraft shot down:
British Hudson bomber AM781 (RAF Sqdn 500/N, pilot W/O R. Obee)

00.12 hrs: the Hudson illuminated the boat with flares after obtaining a radar contact off Oran and then attacked. The aircraft was hit by flak during the initial strafing run, killing the pilot. No depth charges were released as the nose gunner struggled to save the aircraft (misidentified as a Hampden) from crashing. The navigator then flew the aircraft to base at Tafaraoui, where the surviving four aircrew bailed out and allowed it to crash because they were unable to land safely.
This aircraft was formerly credited with sinking U-602 in this action, but the actual target, U-453, far from being sunk, escaped unscathed.

14.40 hrs, NW of Finisterre: Six days into her patrol after leaving La Pallice, U-454 was broken in two by fatally accurate depth charges from the Sunderland, despite its suffering severe damage from the U-boat flak barrage. An attempt to ditch failed, and the subsequent crash killed the pilot and five aircrew. Six survivors were rescued by HMS Wren of the 2nd Escort Group, while HMS Kite saved the commander and 13 survivors from U-454.

12.00 hrs, NW of Finisterre, inbound: the Whitley (misidentified as a Lancaster) made two attack runs dropping four bombs on each run, but without result. It was hit by flak during the second attack, and later had to ditch because of engine trouble. The six crew were rescued by a Spanish trawler.

The sinking of U-459

approx. 17.15 hrs, NW of Corunna, Spain: despite taking the boat by surprise, the Wellington was hit by heavy and accurate AA fire on the initial attack run, lost control, and crashed into the boat on the starboard side. Only the tail gunner (Sgt A.A. Turner) survived, when his turret separated on impact and he found himself in the water close to an inflated dinghy. The remaining five aircrew were killed. U-459 lost several gunners and most of the AA guns in the crash, and the crew found three unexploded depth charges on deck when clearing the wreckage. They decided to roll them into the sea at high speed, but at least one exploded, close enough to disable the steering gear and cause severe damage to the stern compartments.

At approx. 17.30 hrs, a second Wellington (547 Sqn RAF/V, pilot F/O J. Whyte) strafed the boat and dropped seven depth charges, causing further damage. The commander then ordered the crew to abandon ship and scuttled the boat - apparently choosing to go down with his ship. 41 Germans and the sole British survivor were picked up by ORP Orkan some 8 hours later.

0945hrs, southwest of Dakar: despite being hit by flak several times and set on fire, the aircraft continued the attack and dropped six depth charges to port, then crashed into the sea, killing the crew of eight. Two depth charges fell very close, causing devastating damage to the stern of the U-boat, which sank rapidly shortly afterwards. Less than half of the crew managed to abandon ship, many being injured or poisoned by chlorine gas, and most drowned or died from exhaustion or shark attack. Only the commander and six others survived, having managed to reach a rubber dinghy that floated free from the aircraft wreck, and later being picked up by HMS Clarkia on 13 August.

The Liberator pilot, F/O Lloyd Trigg RNZAF, who sank U-468 but perished with his entire crew in doing so, was awarded the Victoria Cross based solely on the testimony of officers from the U-boat, including the commander, Oblt Klemens Schamong. This was the only instance in the war of a statement from the enemy resulting in the award of such a high decoration. F/O Trigg pressed home his attack even though his aircraft was on fire and flying extremely low, an example of extraordinary bravery.

Narva Bay, Baltic: two Ilushin Il-2 Sturmoviks (35. ShAP) attacked. One was hit by flak and later ditched.

The sinking of U-487
19.21 hrs, SW of the Azores: the milch cow boat was attacked by USN carrier aircraft of VC-13 from USS Core after a refuelling meeting was reported by ULTRA. An Avenger/Wildcat team (pilots Lt R.P. Williams and Lt (jg) E.H. Steiger) completely surprised U-487 - crew were seen sun-bathing on deck and AA guns were unmanned during the first attack run. Four depth charges straddled the boat, which came to a stop in a large oil patch. The Wildcat attempted a second strafing run, but was hit by flak and crashed off the port bow, killing the pilot. Two more Wildcats (Lt Cdr C.W. Brewer and Lt J.R. Brownstein) then arrived, and their strafing attacks allowed a second Avenger (Lt (jg) J.F. Schoby) to drop four depth charges direct on target. The detonations lifted U-487 out of the water and broke her back, sinking her in a matter of seconds. 33 survivors were later rescued by USS Barker.

After being damaged in an air attack the previous day the boat was again attacked by the Sunderland soon after 09.00 hrs. The aircraft was hit by flak during the attack run, dropped its depth charges and crashed into the sea, killing five of the 11 aircrew. U-489 suffered mortal damage and sank slowly shortly afterwards. HMS Castleton and HMS Orwell had observed the action from nearby and rescued the aircrew and U-boat survivors.

The II WO and a lookout were seriously wounded in a surprise air attack out of low cloud by a Hudson bomber SE of Trinidad. Four depth charges were released and a direct hit was scored, but the explosion also destroyed the aircraft and the five aircrew. Heavy damage cased the boat to abandon the patrol. 12 days later the II WO was transferred to the milch cow U-462.

11.38 hrs, the Denmark Strait, between Greenland and Iceland: the aircraft, escorting convoy ONS-19 was hit by flak on its first approach. Fires started in both starboard engines and the aircraft crashed, killing the crew of eight, which included the CO of 120 Squadron RAF. The depth charges overshot, causing only minor damage. One of U-539's crew was slightly wounded by strafing.

U-545 was scuttled after this attack

04.53 hrs, North of Finisterre, off the Bay of Biscay, inbound: after approaching using the Leigh Light, the Liberator dropped six depth charges, two to starboard and four to port of U-546 (which caused only minor damage) before the boat dived. The aircraft crashed into the sea 500m (547 yds) from U-546. All nine aircrew died.

18.59 hrs, Bay of Biscay NW of Finisterre, outbound: a group of five boats (U-185, U-358, U-564, U-634 and U-653) were attacked by the Sunderland. After bombing U-564, the aircraft crashed in flames after being hit by intense flak. All 11 aircrew died.

U-564 suffered heavy damage and returned to base escorted by U-185, but was sunk by aircraft the next day.

The sinking of U-564:
14.39 hrs, Bay of Biscay: two inbound U-boats were sighted by the Whitely. U-564 was unable to dive following an air attack the day before and was being escorted back to France by U-185. With fuel running low, the pilot decided to attack at 16.45 hrs and approached U-564. Both boats opened fire and hit the bomber, but its depth charges caused more damage to U-564 and she sank at 17.30 hours. The hydraulics and the starboard engine of the Whitley were damaged, so the crew was forced to ditch, and ended up as German prisoners after being picked up by a French trawler.

12.50 hrs, Mediterranean, south of the Balearic Isles: British Hudson Mk.III V9169 (233 Sqn RAF, pilot F/S S. Woodward) dropped four depth charges on the diving boat which detonated near the bows and forced U-565 back to the surface with severe damage. The AA gunners immediately scored hits on the tail of the aircraft, causing an A/S bomb to fall wide. The heavily damaged Hudson then left the area after receiving more hits during a third attack run.
Another Hudson from the same squadron arrived on the scene shortly afterwards, was also hit by flak on the first attack run, caught fire and crashed into the sea 500m (1,640ft) from the boat. The three depth charges dropped exploded harmlessly.

13.22 hrs, 300 miles (483 km) east of Cape Charles VA: the boat was located by radar and attacked by the PV-1 from NAS New York. The aircraft was hit by flak on the approach, but dropped four depth charges, which turned out to be duds. U-566 misidentified the attacker as a B-25 Mitchell, recording that it left with the starboard engine on fire. Despite being wounded, Lt Cross managed to ditch the plane successfully, but afterwards died in the water, while the other two crewmen were rescued later that day by a Mariner flying boat.

At 18.15 hrs, the boat was attacked by a second PV-1 from NAS New York and again replied with AA fire. One of the four depth charges dropped actually hit U-566 and bounced off before exploding, but caused no damage. The Germans again misidentified the attacker as a Mitchell and scored several AA hits after it passed over the boat, causing the burning aircraft to crash at a distance of some 1200m. All five aircrew were lost.

U-566 then made for the crash site, having sighted a rubber dinghy, but before it was reached another Ventura (VB-126 USN, pilot Lt J.R. Smith) from NAS Quonset and a PBM Mariner flying boat (VB-211 USN, pilot Lt E.C. Scully) from Elizabeth City arrived at the scene. The U-boat fired at the aircraft (misidentified as a Mitchell and a Lerwick), and then dived at 18.29 hrs. The Ventura immediately dropped four depth charges. The depth charges detonated without effect, but U-566 was forced to surface by a malfunctioning diving tank and manned the AA guns again. The Mariner was hit as it made several passes while its eight depth charges hung up, until the emergency release was used. At the same time, the U-boat submerged accidentally, the commander closing the conning tower hatch from the bridge and clinging to the periscope standard until the LI brought the boat to the surface again. The II.WO and seven crew were swept overboard, but were rescued within 20 minutes, during which the replacement crew on the AA guns fought off a strafing run by the Ventura at 19.08 hrs. U-566 subsequently dived and escaped with only minor damage from gunfire, having shot down two aircraft and damaged two others in one day. One of the crew was wounded in the left hand during the last strafing attack while four men, including the commander and I.WO, suffered burst eardrums from their involuntary dive.

The aircraft and the U-boat must have destroyed each other. No survivors.

11.14 hrs, NE of Jan Mayen Island: the boat was attacked by the Catalina astern of convoy QP 14. Accurate flak during the attack run caused four depth charges to fall wide, causing only minor damage to the boat. With two wounded and damage to one engine and the petrol tanks, the Catalina made a forced landing near the convoy. The crew were rescued by HMS Marne.

This attack by a British Wellington bomber during the night of 30/31 Jan. 1944 in the Bay of Biscay west of Bordeaux, France in position 45.25N, 05.15W was formerly credited with the sinking of U-364 with depth charges.

The target was in fact the outbound U-608, which escaped unscathed. The boat scored hits on the aircraft with AA fire when it switched on the Leigh Light and then escaped by diving. The Wellington did not drop any depth charges, and apparently crashed shortly afterwards, as witnessed by the crew of a Polish Wellington (RAF Sqdn 304/2B, F/S S. Czekaski), who apparently misinterpreted the crash as exploding depth charges. The six aircrew were all lost.

U-615 was finally lost after a massive and prolonged air action against her in the Caribbean. The boat had fought for days against overwhelming odds before finally being sunk.

01.25 hrs, Bay of Biscay: on attacking, the Wellington bomber (RAF Sqdn 172/J, pilot F/L L.H. Such), was hit by flak and crashed into the sea, killing all six aircrew.

1340hrs, 250 miles west of Lisbon, inbound: the port side of the aircraft was hit by flak during the attack run, damaging the wing, engine and a fuel tank and wounding the bow gunner. Due to this damage, only the three depth charges on the starboard side were dropped, but did not damage U-642, which crash-dived, and thus failed to observe the burning Catalina ditch shortly afterwards. Two aircrew died in the crash and another died the next day from a heart attack. Seven survivors were rescued four days later by HMS Swale and taken to Casablanca.

1745hrs, in the vicinity of combined convoy SL-139/MKS-30: forewarned by the Naxos radar detector, U-648 fought off the Sunderland with accurate AA fire. Approx. one hour later the aircraft sent a distress call saying it was about to ditch at 42°40N/19°30W. The crew of 11 were never found.

1424hrs, Bay of Biscay, inbound: The Whitley was shot down after dropping four depth charges, none of which caused any damage. The crew of six were all killed.

0412hrs, vicinity of convoy SL-139: the aircraft was apparently hit by flak in making a strafing run using the Leigh Light, and its depth charges fell wide. On the return flight three engines failed and the pilot was forced to ditch. He was the sole survivor, rescued on 22 November by HMS Lincolnshire.

1028hrs, Bay of Biscay, outbound: the Halifax (misidentified as a Sunderland) only strafed the boat on its first attack and received several AA hits in one of the port engines during a second run. The pilot then apparently lost control when turning to come in again and the Halifax crashed into the sea about 500m (546 yds) from the boat, killing the crew of eight.

22.18 hrs, SW of Cape St Vincent, Portugal: After being hit by flak while dropping depth charges, the Wellington was seen to fly away with the Leigh Light still switched on, and later an SOS message was heard. It did not return from patrol and was reported missing with its crew of six.

The boat claimed two Soviet planes (an Il-2 and a Pe-2) shot down near Ösel island in the Baltic. The U-boat was acting as a convoy flak escort.

A Canadian Catalina flying boat (162 Sqdn RCAF/T) was shot down. The boat was lost in this attack.

Bay of Biscay, inbound: the boat shot down the Wellington (killing the crew of six) shortly after being left unable to dive following an attack by a British B-24 Liberator (RAF Sqn 224/C, pilot F/L E.W. Lindsay). The badly damaged U-736 was later escorted into Lorient by five minesweepers.

The aircraft located U-737 with radar west of the Lofoten Islands, and despite AA hits causing a fire in the starboard outer engine, dropped six depth charges that detonated as close as 10m (33ft) to the U-boat as it dived, forcing it to resurface immediately. The Liberator attacked again, but sustained more flak damage - one round hit the nose, wounding both navigators and disabling the bomb sight and release gear, so that no more depth charges could be dropped. The aircrew managed to put out the fire and jettisoned the remaining depth charges. One of the wounded navigators guided the aircraft to Skitten, Scotland, where it made a belly landing on two engines, and was later written off.

The aircraft was shot down with the loss of all seven aircrew. Depth charges that were dropped did no damage.

22.05 hrs, Bay of Biscay, west of Bordeaux, inbound: repeated AA hits were scored on the Halifax during its first attack run, and it crashed, killing the crew of eight.

2122hrs, about 380 miles west of Lisbon: While escorting combined convoys SL-140/MKS-31 from its base on the Azores, the Wellington made a Leigh Light attack and was hit by flak after making an initial strafing run. Its subsequent crash was witnessed by U-262 and U-238 which picked up two survivors (air gunners F/S Nicolas J. Martin and Sgt Thomas B. Semple). The other four aircrew were lost. Sgt Semple was the wireless operator and later convinced the Germans during his interrogation that Allied aircraft were able to passively locate U-boats by homing in on their radar detection devices. This deception led to the order to U-boats to turn off their Naxos detectors.

A Canadian Wellington (Sqdn 407/E) was shot down on the Brest - La Pallice route.

A British B-24 Liberator bomber (Sqdn 86/N) was shot down in the Norwegian Sea west of Ålesund.

The aircraft was on anti-submarine patrol and attacked U-804 at 2259hrs west of Bergen, but was hit by AA fire and forced to ditch 13 minutes later. Eight men from U-804 were wounded in the action. The two aircrew were rescued by U-1000 at 0215hrs on 18 June and taken to Norway for interrogation.

The boat was shadowing convoy ONS 20 from a point about 15 miles (24 km) south when the aicraft attacked. Both port engines were hit by flak and the depth charges failed to release, but a second Liberator, FL984 (RAF Sqdn 59/S, pilot P/O W.J. Thomas) joined the attack, straddled U-844 with a stick of depth charges and dropped four more into the wash after the U-boat sank. This Liberator made it back to Iceland despite flak damage to the starboard inner engine.

After its depth charges again failed to release in a second attack, the first Liberator was so badly damaged by flak that it was forced to ditch near the convoy. Two aircrew were lost, and the remaining five were all injured, but were rescued by HMS Pink.

12.21 hrs, South Atlantic approx. 575 miles (925km) S of St. Helena: attack by a Grumman Avenger from USS Solomons. The aircraft made four attack runs and was shot down on the last, crashing into the sea and killing the crew of three. Its contact report resulted in more air attacks from the carrier, which sank U-860.

The sinking of U-860
At 19.22 hrs the boat was located by an Avenger from USS Solomons, which immedately sent reinforcements. Three attacks commenced at 19.46 hrs and sank U-860 seven minutes later. The first was a co-ordinated strafing and rocket attack by two Avengers (Lt Cdr H.M. Avery and Ens M.J. Spear) and two Wildcats (Ens T.J. Wadsworth and Ens R.E. McMahon). Wadsworth had to return to the carrier due to flak damage to a drop tank. A similar attack by McMahon and another Avenger (Lt (jg) D.E. Weigle) then followed. Rocket hits were scored in both attacks, and another Avenger (Lt (jg) W.F. Chamberlain) then dropped two depth charges, covered by a strafing run from Lt Cdr Avery. Flak damage and the explosions of the depth charges directly forward of the conning tower set the Avenger on fire, and it ditched in the sea ahead of the boat. U-860 then sank, leaving 30-40 survivors in the water. USS Straub and USS Herzog arrived during the night and rescued 20 German survivors, including the commander, but no trace of the Avenger crew was found.

A British Catalina (Sqdn 265/H) attacked the boat. The boat shot down the aircraft and escaped, despite a massive search that followed.

14.20 hrs, off Norway: the boat was attacked while searching for U-476, which had been badly damaged in an air attack earlier in the day. The Sunderland was hit by flak during the attack run and and crashed into the sea after dropping three depth charges (no damage). The crew of 12 all died.

A British B-24 Liberator (53 Sqn RAF/T) was shot down.

03.51 hrs, NW of Cape Finisterre, inbound: the B-24 strafed the boat in a Leigh Light attack and was hit by flak during the approach. It was observed to crash into the sea with one of the port engines on fire approx. 600m (656 yds) from the boat, exploding on impact and killing all 11 aircrew. Two depth charges and a small bomb dropped by the passing plane fell wide, causing no damage.

11.34 hrs, south of Farsund, Norway: the boat was attacked by eight Beaufighters while en route to Bergen escorted by the German minesweeper M-489. Four Beaufighters of 144 Sqdn RAF carried torpedoes and four from 404 Sqdn RCAF acted as flak suppressors. Both vessels were slightly damaged by strafing but all torpedoes missed. Flak brought down two Beaufighters, killing all four aircrew. One crew member aboard the minesweeper and three crew members aboard the U-boat were seriously wounded. Oberfunkmaat Rudolf Polzhuber from U-1062 died shortly before arrving at Egersund.

Off Egerøy, Nth of Stavanger, Norway: U-1163 and U-771 were being transferred from Stavanger to Kristiansand South and were proceeding on the surface accompanied by surface escorts when Norwegian Mosquitos E/333 and S/333 (HR126) attacked. S for Sugar crashed into the sea with the loss of Fnr. Axel Reidar Eikemo and Kvm. Claus Harr. Both U-boats were undamaged.

Early evening, 120 miles (193 km) N of the Shetland Isles: the Canso, operating from RAF Wick, Nth Scotland sighted and sank the U-boat with four depth charges despite the starboard wing being set on fire by heavy and accurate flak, and the engine subsequently falling off. The pilot managed to land the crippled aircraft, and the entire crew of eight escaped, but were forced to take turns using only one dinghy. There were five survivors when they were rescued 21 hours later. The captain of the Canso, Flight Lieutenant D.E. Hornell, was awarded a posthumous Victoria Cross for his conduct during the attack and afterwards while awaiting rescue in the dinghy.


116 aircraft shot down by 97 individual U-boats for the loss of 31 U-boats either sunk during the attack or due to being located by other forces shortly afterwards and sunk.

One source says that RAF Coastal Command (U-boat hunters) lost 700 aircraft (badly damaged, shot down and paid off - not all to U-boats of course) and sank 220 U-boats during the war. I've been unable to verify the RAF losses but the U-boat figure is about right it seems. These figures show the immense effort put out by the British to hunt down the U-boats and almost all the aircraft successes took place in 1942 and later.

Please note
There may be missing aircraft losses from this page, if you spot any missing or some data that is not 100% accurate please contact me. This page is based on the best available information at this time but mistakes or omissions are possible.


German Type VIIC submarines were preceded by the shorter Type VIIB submarines. U-552 had a displacement of 769 tonnes (757 long tons) when at the surface and 871 tonnes (857 long tons) while submerged. [1] She had a total length of 67.10 m (220 ft 2 in), a pressure hull length of 50.50 m (165 ft 8 in), a beam of 6.20 m (20 ft 4 in), a height of 9.60 m (31 ft 6 in), and a draught of 4.74 m (15 ft 7 in). The submarine was powered by two Germaniawerft F46 four-stroke, six-cylinder supercharged diesel engines producing a total of 2,800 to 3,200 metric horsepower (2,060 to 2,350 kW 2,760 to 3,160 shp) for use while surfaced, two Brown, Boveri & Cie GG UB 720/8 double-acting electric motors producing a total of 750 metric horsepower (550 kW 740 shp) for use while submerged. She had two shafts and two 1.23 m (4 ft) propellers. The boat was capable of operating at depths of up to 230 metres (750 ft). [1]

The submarine had a maximum surface speed of 17.7 knots (32.8 km/h 20.4 mph) and a maximum submerged speed of 7.6 knots (14.1 km/h 8.7 mph). [1] When submerged, the boat could operate for 80 nautical miles (150 km 92 mi) at 4 knots (7.4 km/h 4.6 mph) when surfaced, she could travel 8,500 nautical miles (15,700 km 9,800 mi) at 10 knots (19 km/h 12 mph). U-552 was fitted with five 53.3 cm (21 in) torpedo tubes (four fitted at the bow and one at the stern), fourteen torpedoes, one 8.8 cm (3.46 in) SK C/35 naval gun, 220 rounds, and a 2 cm (0.79 in) C/30 anti-aircraft gun. The boat had a complement of between forty-four and sixty. [1]

Initial voyage to Helgoland Edit

Following construction, which was completed on 4 December 1940, U-552 was given two months of working-up training, during which she prepared her crew and equipment for the operations ahead. She then sailed from Kiel on 13 February to Helgoland for her first official patrol, arriving there on 18 February 1941. This port city was to remain U-552 ' s home base until she was transferred to the occupied French port of St Nazaire in mid-March 1941. [2]

First patrol Edit

U-552 ' s first official war patrol began on 18 February 1941 when she left Helgoland for a patrol in the North Sea and the North Atlantic south of Iceland. [3] This first operation yielded one British tanker and one Icelandic trawler carrying fish. [4] The British tanker, Cadillac, was sunk just north of Scotland on 1 March while the trawler was sunk just south of Iceland on 10 March. [4] Following these victories, U-552 headed back to St Nazaire. The remainder of her later patrols were all conducted from the French city, which gave her easy access to the Atlantic Ocean and allowed her more time at sea. [3]

Second patrol Edit

U-552 began her second war patrol on 7 April 1941 when she left her new home port of St Nazaire for the North Atlantic. The U-552 arrived in her assigned patrol area south-west of Iceland on 11 April. [5] No targets were engaged until 26 April when at 18:09 GMT, the U-552 was midway between Iceland and northern Scotland. Topp sighted “smoke cloud bearing 10°T” from a small “patrol vessel size” target. The target was followed “at the limit of visibility” while waiting for nightfall. At 00:10 (27 April), about 130 nautical miles SE of Iceland the small vessel Commander Horton was attacked. The U-552 log records “Fishing trawler (patrol vessel) sunk with 82 shots of 8.8 cm and 102 shots MG C30. No resistance.” (Commander Horton, 227 tones, 14 casualties).

At about 11:00 GMT on 27 April the U-552 was submerged and “Propeller sounds heard bearing 200°T”. Topp then commenced a surface pursuit of a large steamer. “Estimate enemy speed 16 knots. Am gaining only as a result of the zig zags.” At 14:12, at grid position AL3236, the Beacon Grange was in the targeting range of 1000 meters. The submerged U-552 fired a fan of three torpedoes. All three torpedoes hit the ship. A few minutes later while the crew were launching lifeboats, the U-552 surfaced and “ran in for a coup de grace”. A fourth torpedo was fired and the U-boat log records “Hit aft 20 meters.Steamer breaks completely in the center, deck awash, ends continue to float.” (Beacon Grange, 10,119 tones, 2 casualties)

During the afternoon of 28 April 1941, an historic battle was underway about 180 miles south of Iceland. A wolf pack “Rudeltaktik” of five U-boats had launched the war’s first submerged daylight attack on a convoy. The submerged U-boats, which were spread out over a distance of about 10 miles, intercepted and attacked an east bound convoy. The U-123 (Karl-Heinz Moehle), had spotted Convoy HX-121 and called in U-65 (Joachim Hoppe), U-95 (Gerd Schreiber), U-96 (Heinrich Lehmann-Willenbrock) and U-552 (Erich Topp) for the kill. U-552 started things off at 14:15 GMT (60°06’N 20°18’W) when it torpedoed the British tanker Capulet. There were 9 casualties and the tanker was abandoned but did not sink. At 17:25 three more ships were sunk by U-96 with one spread of three torpedoes: British tanker Oilfield (47 casualties, 8 survivors) Norwegian tanker Caledonia (12 casualties, 25 survivors) and British freighter Port Hardy (one casualty). U-65 was sunk by H.M.S. Douglas in a depth charge attack, and all 50 men in the crew perished.

After torpedoing the tanker Capulet, U-552 was depth charged in five separate attacks from destroyers H.M.S. Maori and H.M.S. Inglefield, forcing the submarine to remain submerged for hours until the convoy was out of range. The U-552 had been damaged and this would be a troubled day, with attacks from air and sea as it neared the convoy, swift dives, and gingerly resurfacing. After diving and hearing nothing at 01:45 on the 30th, Erich Topp realized that Convoy HX-121 must have changed course to the north. His convoy pursuit was broken off and his boat came to a southerly course. At 02:18 GMT, Topp sent a message to B.d.U. (Admiral Dönitz): “Sank: “Beacon Grange”, a patrol vessel. From convoy tanker 8000 tons. Return Transit via North Channel. [My position] AM2477.” In his log, Topp recorded “Intention: As long as fuel allows, position in North Channel.”

On 30 April, the surfaced U-552 was about 150 nautical miles west of the North Channel entrance … and searching for targets. At 21:40 GMT, Topp sighted a ship, the troopship S.S. Nerissa approaching from the north-west. For almost 2 hours, Topp stalked the zigzagging Nerissa and adjusted his torpedo firing solution accordingly. Finally, Topp saw a phosphorescent glow on the sea and decided that 1,000 metres was as close as he should approach his target, and he fired a fan of three torpedoes. The U-552 log records that one of the three torpedoes “hit astern” at 00:27 Berlin Time (GMT+2). About 6 minutes later, Topp closed in on the already stricken ship and fired a fourth torpedo as a coup de grace into Nerissa’s aft starboard side while her crew and passengers were launching lifeboats. More than half of the 207 casualties were Canadians. (S.S. Nerissa, 5,583 tones, Casualties 207)

The U-552 had 4 remaining torpedoes and she continued searching for merchant ships in transit towards the North Channel. Topp was not successful in engaging any additional targets and almost 48 hours after sinking the S.S. Nerissa, the U-552 commenced her homeward transit south. She arrived in St Nazaire on 6 May. [6] [7] [8]

Third patrol Edit

U-552 left St Nazaire for her third war patrol on 25 May 1941. In 39 days, she travelled into the North Atlantic and sank three British vessels: the Ainderby on 10 June, the Chinese Prince on 12 June and the Norfolk on 18 June. During the attack on the Norfolk, U-552 attempted to attack the remaining ships in the convoy but was forced to break off the attack due to the arrival of several of the convoy's escorts. All of these attacks occurred off the northwest coast of Ireland, and once U-552 returned to St. Nazaire on 2 July 1941 she had amassed a total of 24,401 tonnes from the ships she had sunk. [9]

Fourth patrol Edit

U-552 ' s fourth patrol was much less successful than her previous three. Having left St Nazaire on 18 August, she proceeded to head south into the waters off Portugal and Spain. It was here that she sank the Norwegian vessel, Spind. Following this sinking, U-552 returned to St Nazaire on 26 August 1941, after only nine days at sea. [10]

Fifth and sixth patrols Edit

Her next two patrols all took her further into the Atlantic, where the danger was lessened, but so were the targets, with the result that she only hit three more cargo ships. This was also the time, during her final patrol of 1941, that she sank the Reuben James, which was torpedoed on 30 October in controversial circumstances. [11] [12]

Sinking of USS Reuben James Edit

On 31 October 1941, USS Reuben James was one of five destroyers escorting convoy HX-156, close to the coast of Iceland, about 600 nmi (1,100 km 690 mi) west of the island. Reuben James had just begun turning to investigate a strong direction-finder bearing when a torpedo launched from U-552 struck her port side and caused an explosion in her forward magazine. [12] The entire bow section of the destroyer was blown off as far back as the fourth funnel and sank immediately. The stern remained afloat for around five minutes before sinking unsecured depth charges compounded the damage, exploding as they sank and killing survivors in the water. One hundred and fifteen of her 160-man crew were killed, including all the officers. [13] [14]

The destroyer was the first US Navy warship to be sunk in World War II. [12]

The incident provoked a furious outburst in the United States, especially when Germany refused to apologize, instead countering that the destroyer was operating in what Germany considered to be a war zone and had suffered the consequences. The sinking of the Reuben James did not lead the US to declare war on Germany it did, however, provide a pretext to officially transfer the US Coast Guard from its peacetime role as an arm of the US Treasury Department to a wartime function as part of the US Navy. Congress also amended the Neutrality Act to permit the arming of US-registered merchant ships and authorized them to enter European waters for the first time since 1939. [15] [16]

Second Happy Time Edit

In 1942, again commanded by Erich Topp (who would later become an admiral in the post-war Bundesmarine), U-552 participated in the "Second Happy Time" (Operation Drumbeat or Paukenschlag), during which German submarines had great success against unescorted American merchantmen sailing alone along the eastern seaboard of the US. U-552 was particularly successful during this period, sinking 13 ships and damaging another in just three patrols in the first six months of 1942. Two further patrols under Topp during the summer netted four more ships. However, in an attack against Convoy ON-155 on 3 August 1942, the boat was nearly sunk when she was caught on the surface by the Canadian corvette HMCS Sackville. The corvette machine-gunned the submarine and hit the conning tower with a four-inch shell, causing severe damage and forcing Topp to return to base for repairs. [17] U-552 was badly damaged by heavy seas during another patrol and was put into port for repairs, during which Topp was promoted and replaced by a more cautious commander, Klaus Popp.

Sinking of the David H. Atwater Edit

The destruction of the SS David H. Atwater, in the Atlantic Ocean 10 nmi (19 km 12 mi) off Chincoteague, Virginia, was one of the more controversial actions of the Kriegsmarine during the Second World War, primarily due to the manner of the sinking. [18]

On the night of 2 April 1942, at the height of the U-boat offensive against US shipping known as the "Second Happy Time," the unarmed coastal steamer David H. Atwater was en route from Norfolk, Virginia to Fall River, Massachusetts, [19] with a full load of 4,000 tons of coal.

Around 21:00, between Cape Charles and Cape Henlopen, [20] the ship was ambushed by U-552, which had followed her submerged. The submarine surfaced about 600 yd (550 m) from the freighter and opened fire with her 88mm deck gun and machine guns without warning, one of her first shells destroying the bridge and killing all of the officers. In all, 93 rounds were fired from the deck gun, with 50 hits being recorded on the small freighter, [21] which rapidly began to sink.

As it did so, Topp directed his crewmen to continue firing, striking the Atwater ' s crewmen as they tried to man the lifeboats. [22] When Captain Webster was hit, the crew abandoned attempts to launch the lifeboats and leapt into the sea. [23]

The first ship to arrive on the scene was the small Coast Guard Patrol Boat USS CG-218, which found a lifeboat holding three survivors and three bodies the survivors reported that they had dived overboard and swum to the boat. Next on the scene was the Coast Guard cutter USCGC Legare, which had heard the gunfire and arrived just fifteen minutes later. The Legare found a second lifeboat with a body aboard the boat was discovered to have been riddled by gunfire, and lent strength to the widespread belief at the time that U-boats were deliberately murdering the survivors of ships they had sunk. [23] The Legare landed the three survivors and four bodies at Chincoteague Island Coastguard Station, then returned to sea to search further. [24]

The destroyers USS Noa and Herbert were directed to the scene at 21:22 and arrived at 24:00, [24] but U-552 had by then escaped the scene, going on to sink other vessels. [25]

Whether the attack on the liferafts was deliberate, or an unfortunate and unintended consequence of a nighttime attack has been heavily debated. Some of the crew of U-552 survived the war, and her captain, Erich Topp, later became an Admiral in the post-war Bundesmarine. No charges were brought against Topp, as happened to Helmuth von Ruckteschell, captain of the raider Widder for a similar offence.

Later patrols Edit

U-552 had less success in later years, as did the U-boat force in general, as U-boats failed to keep ahead of the rapidly increasing numbers and capabilities of Allied anti-submarine efforts. She was transferred to operations off the Spanish, Portuguese and African coasts, which were nearer to base and less dangerous than the newly reorganized defenses of the United States, where she attempted to sink troopships during Operation Torch. Whilst on this duty, Topp sank a small British minesweeper and later a cargo ship, but failed to enter the Straits of Gibraltar or seriously threaten the landings.

During 1943, U-552 was increasingly unable to serve effectively against the well-prepared and organized Allied convoy system, a fact reflected by her failure to sink a single ship during her two patrols into the North Atlantic Ocean. During one of these, a Royal Air Force B-24 Liberator aircraft spotted her and she was seriously damaged by depth charges, which necessitated four months' repairs.

In 1944 she had a single patrol, but was unable to close with or threaten any Allied convoys, and so was withdrawn to Germany in April 1944 for use as a training vessel in the 22nd U-boat Flotilla, a role she fulfilled until 2 May 1945, when her crew scuttled her in Wilhelmshaven bay to prevent her capture.

U-288 under attack - History



Each Summary is complete in its own right. The same information may therefore be found in a number of related summaries

(for more ship information, go to Naval History Homepage and type name in Site Search)




7th - U-boats concentrated against UK/West and North African convoys, mainly to the west and southwest of Ireland, and eight were lost from all causes, but first the Royal Navy suffered a loss. As the 5th Escort Group swept to the west of Cape Finisterre, frigate "TWEED" was tor pedoed and sunk by "U-305". Intense A/S activity further north saw "U-305" lost well before the month was out. 8th - "U-757" to frigate "Bayntun" and Canadian corvette "Camrose" of the 4th and 5th EGs escorting OS64/KM538. 13th - Northeast of the Azores "U-231" was lost to a RA F Leigh light Wellington. 15th - Off the Azores "U-377" was sunk by one of her own torpedoes. 17th - Back to the waters west of Ireland, and "U-305" was no w sunk by destroyer "Wanderer" returning from a search for blockade runners. 19th - "U-641" attacked O S65 and KMS39 and went down to corvette "Violet" of the British B3 group. 28th - Operations against OS66/KMS40 led to the loss of "U-271" to a US Navy Liberator and "U-571" to a RAAF Sunderland flying boat - one of the famous "flying porcupines". West of Ireland "U-972" suffered the same "own-torpedo" fate as "U-377" two weeks earlier.

Russian Convoys - Escort ing Russian convoy JW56B, destroyer "HARDY (2)" was to rpedoed by "U-278" to the south of Bear Island on the 30th and had to be scuttled. On the same da y destroyers "Whitehall" and "Meteor" of the escort sank "U-314". All 16 of JW56B's ships reached Kola Inlet. JW56A earlier in the month had not been so fortunate - of the 20 merchantmen, five returned due to the weather, and three were lost to U-boats.

Capt Walker's 2nd Escort Group - Ca pt Walker with sloops "Starling", "Kite", "Magpie", "Wild Goose" and "Woodpecker" accompanied by escort carriers "Activity" and "Nairana" arrived in the waters to the southwest of Ireland. Over the next three weeks the five sloops shared in the sinking of six U-boats operating against the convoys passing through the area. They started on the 31st when "Starling", "Magpie" and "Wild Goose" depth-charged "U-592" to destruction.

Battle of the Atlantic - O ver the next five months U-boat losses were so heavy that by May 1944, North Atlantic operations had virtually ceased. In this period only 25 merchant ships were lost in the North and South Atlantic at a cost of 77 U-boats from all causes. At the same time the Allies were not so successful against them as they passed through the Bay of Biscay from French bases, the Northern Transit Area from Norway, and direct from Germany. Now equipped with 10cm radar detectors they only lost five of their number in the Bay, but in mid-May were badly hit by RAF Coastal Command off Norway. By then the whole complexion of the U-boat war near the shores of Europe changed with the invasion of Normandy.

Monthly Loss Summary
- 5 British, Allied and neutral ships of 36,000 tons in the Atlantic from all causes, 2 destroyers including one US off New York, and 1 frigate
- 14 U-boats including 2 by RAF and RAAF Bay of Biscay patrols 1 by RAF-laid mine in Bay of Biscay 1 by US escort carrier Guadalcanal off the Azores



Capt Walker's 2nd Escort Group continued - U-boat concentrations again suffered badly to the west and southwest of Ireland, and 10 boats were lost, all to the Royal Navy in exchange for a sloop and one straggler. Capt Walker's 2nd EG accounted for five, which added to the one on 31st January giave a record for U-boat sinkings in one patrol only equalled by the US destroyer escort "England" in the South West Pacific in May 1944. 8th - In support of convoys SL147/MKS38, Capt Walker in "Starling" together with "Kite", "Magpie", "Wild Goose" and "Woodpecker" shared in the sinking of "U-762". 9th - "Starling", "Kite", "Magpie", "Wild Goose" and "Woodpecker" now shared in the sinking of "U-734" and "U-238". 11th - Back to the southwest of Ireland, "Wild Goose" and "Woodpecker" hunted down "U-424" and destroyed her with depth charges. 19th - The 2nd EG, now supporting ON224 was attacked by "U-264". Brought to the surface by "Starling" and "Woodpecker", she was scuttled, the first of the schnorkel-equipped boats to be lost. 19th - As Capt Walker's Group looked for its seventh victim "WOODPECKER" lost her stern to an acoustic torpedo from "U-764". Towed slowly home, she sank on the 27th off the Scilly Islands.

Other supporting Escort Groups also had their successes in the month: 10th - West of Ireland, "U-666" was sunk by Swordfish of 842 Squadron from escort carrier "Fencer" in support of trans-Atlantic convoy ON223. 18th - Frigate "Spey" of the 10th EG with ONS29 sank "U-406". 19th - As the 10th EG transferred to convoy ON224 (2nd EG was also in support), "Spey" claimed another success with the sinking of "U-386". 24th - West of Ireland, "U-257" was s unk by Canadian frigate "Waskesiu" of the 6th EG with Halifax/UK convoy SC153. 25th - Further south "U-91" was lo st to frigates "Affleck", "Gore" and "Gould" of the 1st EG carrying out an A/S patrol in support of the convoys in the vicinity.

Russian Convoys (map below) - The 42 merch antmen of Russian convoy JW57 all reached Kola on the 28th, but one escort and two U-boats were sunk in the battles surrounding them: 24th - To the northwest of Norway, "U-713" was put down by destroyer "Keppel" of the escort. 25th - Next day, destroyer "MAHRATTA" was los t to an acoustic torpedo from "U-956" or "U-990" and sank with heavy loss of life. A RAF Catalina of No 210 Squadron flying at extreme range managed to sink "U-601".

Monthly Loss Summary
- 2 British, Allied and neutral ships of 12,000 tons in the Atlantic from all causes, 1 destroyer and 1 sloop
- 15 U-boats including 2 by RAF to the west of Scotland 1 by US Navy aircraft off Ascension Island

20th - On patrol off Trevose Head, southwest England for a reported U-boat, destroyer "WARWICK" was tor pedoed and sunk by "U-413" - the first enemy submarine to effectively penetrate British coastal waters since 1940.

18th - Royal Navy ships continued to suffer casualties during the Battle for Anzio. Returning to Naples, the seemingly indestructible cruiser "PENELOPE" was torpe doed and sunk by "U-410".

24th - In the Strait of Gibraltar, USN Catalina's equipped with the new magnetic anomaly detector (MAD) located "U-761" trying to break in to the Mediterranean. Destroyers "Anthony" and "Wishart" of the Gibraltar patrol sank her.

14th - On patrol in the Malacca Strait, submarine "Tally Ho" had another success (the other was cruiser "Kuma" the month before) by sinking German ex-Italian submarine "UIt-23" bound for Europe with cargo from the Far East.

1st - The 1st Escort Group, last recorded five days earlier sinking "U-91" was now to the far southwest of Ireland, north of the Azores. Frigates "Affleck", "Gould", "Garlies" and "Gore" had already hunted a contact for 30hr when the second two ships had to leave for Gibraltar. Late on the 1st the tables were turned when "GOULD" was hit and sunk by a Gnat acoustic torpedo. That just left "Affleck" which located "U-358" and sent her to the bottom with depth charges and gunfire. At 38hr this was probably the longest continuous U-boat hunt of the war.

6th - In another long hunt lasting 30hr, the Canadian C2 group escorting Halifax/UK convoy HX280 sank "U-744" in mid-Atlantic. Canadian destroyers "Chaudiere" and "Gatineau", frigate "St Catherines", corvettes "Chilliwack" and "Fennel" and British destroyer "lcarus" were joined by corvette "Kenilworth Castle" before the action was over.

9th - Corvette "ASPHODEL" escorting West and North Africa/UK convoys SL150/MKS41 was torpedoed and sunk by "U-575" to the west of the Bay of Biscay. The U-boat was lost four days later.

10th - In an attack on Halifax/UK convoy SC154, "U-845" was sunk in mid-Atlantic by Canadian C1 group including destroyer "St Laurent", frigates "Owen Sound", "Swansea" and British destroyer "Forester".

13th - RAF Wellingtons flying from the Azores attacked "U-575" well to the north. She was finally sent to the bottom by the aircraft and ships of the US escort carrier "Bogue" task group and Canadian frigate "Prince Rupert" from nearby convoy ON227.

15th - In mid-Atlantic, Swordfish of 825 Squadron from escort carrier "Vindex" working with 2nd EG's "Starling" and "Wild Goose" sank "U-653" - Capt Walker's 13th kill.

25th -'Tsetse' Mosquitos of RAF Coastal Command armed with new 6pdr guns had their first success. On Bay of Biscay patrol one of them sank "U-976".

Russian Convoys - Th e next return convoy from Russia RA57, sailed with the escort of the February JW57 including escort carrier "Chaser" and her rocket-firing Swordfish of 816 Squadron. On the 4th, to the north west of Norway, they damaged "U-472" which was finished off by destroyer "Onslaught". In the next two days, in spite of foul weather, they destroyed "U-366" and "U-973". The 2nd EG moved from Atlantic convoys to support Russian convoy JW58. Two days after leaving Loch Ewe and by now off Iceland, "Starling" sank "U-961" on the 29th. More U-boats were lost before the convoy reached Russia early in April.

Monthly Loss Summary
- 8 British, Allied and neutral ships of 41,000 tons in the Atlantic from all causes, 2 escorts and 1 US destroyer off Iceland
- 17 U-boats including 1 by RCAF off Ireland 4 by the aircraft and ships of USS Block Island off the Azores and Cape Verde Islands 1 by unknown causes in the North Atlantic 1 by SAAF off South Africa

20th - Royal Navy submarine "GRAPH" (the captured "U-570") broke her tow and ran aground on Islay Island off the west coast of Scotland.

10th - In operations against Allied shipping bound for Italy, three U-boats were lost together with one Royal Navy destroyer. On the 10th off Anzio, 'Hunts' "Blankney", "Blencathra", "Brecon" and "Exmoor" and US destroyer "Madison", sank "U-450" . The same day south of Sardinia, anti-submarine trawler "Mull" sank "U-343" . The destroyer and the third U-boa t were sunk at the end of the month

16th - US Navy Catalinas used MAD to locate another U-boat in the Strait of Gibraltar on passage into the Mediterranean. Destroyer "Vanoc" and frigate "Affleck" were called up and accounted for "U-392".

30th - In support of Allied shipping bound for Italy, destroyers "Laforey", "Tumult" and 'Hunts' "Blencathra" and "Hambledon" located a U-boat north of Sicily. As the search proceeded, "LAFOREY" was t orpedoed and sunk, but the remaining ships found and finished off "U-223".

Russian Convoys - Three d ays after 2nd EG sank "U-961" off Iceland, Russia-bound JW58 was to the northwest of Norway and the attacking U-boats lost three of their number. On the 1st an Avenger of 846 Squadron from escort carrier "Tracker" damaged "U-355" with rockets and destroyer "Beagle" completed the job. Next day - the 2nd - destroyer "Keppel" sank "U-360" with her ahead-throwing Hedgehog mortar. On the 3rd it was the turn of "U-288". A Swordfish, Wildcat and Avenger from "Tracker's" 846 and "Activity's" 819 Squadrons sent her to the bottom. Apart from one merchantman that was forced to return, all JW58's remaining 48 ships arrived at Kola on the 5th April.

6th - "U-302" sank two sh ips from Halifax/UK convoy SC156 to the northwest of the Azores before being destroyed by frigate "Swale" of the British B5 group.

8th - To the northwest of Cape Finisterre, sloops "Crane" and "Cygnet" of the 7th EG accounted for "U-962".

14th - North of the Azores "U-448" attacked e scort carrier "Biter" but was detected by Canadian frigate "Swansea" of the 9th EG and sunk by her and sloop "Pelican" of the 7th.

19th - Norwegian submarine "Ula" working with the Home Fleet flotillas and on patrol off Stavanger, SW Norway sank "U-974".

Monthly Loss Summary
- 7 British, Allied and neutral ships of 48,000 tons in the Atlantic from all causes
- 16 U-boats including 2 by RAF in North Atlantic 1 by RAF Bay of Biscay patrol 6 by US Navy forces off America, Madeira, Cap Verde Islands and in North Atlantic.

There were no merchant shipping losses in either the Indian or Pacific Oceans in April and May 1944

Russian Convoys - Return Russian convoy RA59 (45 ships) was attacked by U-boats to the northwest of Norway. One ship was lost, but in return the Swordfish of 842 Squadron from "Fencer" sank three with depth charges - on the 1st, "U-277", and next day "U-674" and "U-959". The convoy arrived at Loch Ewe with the rest of the 44 ships on 6th May.

5th/6th - The 2nd and 5th EGs in the North Atlantic detected U-boats by HF/DF after the torpedoing of a US destroyer. "U-473" was found by 2nd EG (Capt Walker) and sunk on the 5th by "Starling", "Wren" and "Wild Goose". Next day it was the 5th EG's turn (Cdr Macintyre). Aircraft of 825 Squadron from escort carrier "Vindex" locate "U-765" and frigates "Aylmer", "Bickerton" and "Bligh" shared in her destruction.

6th - The US escort carrier "Block Island" group was again on patrol in the Atlantic off the Canaries and being directed to U-boats by the work of 'Ultra' and the Admiralty Tracking Room. On the 6th her aircraft and accompanying destroyer escorts sank "U-66". Then at the end of the month, the carrier was sunk.

7th - Canadian frigate "VALLEYFIELD", with a Canadian group escorting UK/North America convoy ONM234, was sunk off Cape Race, Newfoundland by "U-548".

29th - "BLOCK ISLAND" was to rpedoed and sunk by "U-549" in the Canaries area, but her task group soon avenged the loss of their leader.

30th - Destroyer "Milne" sank "U-289" to the southwest of Bear Island in the Arctic.

Battle of the Atlantic - RAF C oastal Command and one of its Norwegian squadrons were particularly successful between the 16th and 27th against the U-boats passing through the Northern Transit Area off south and west Norway. In the space of 12 days, "U-240", "U-241", "U-476", "U-675", "U-990" and "U-292" were sunk.

Monthly Loss Summary
- 3 British, Allied and neutral ships of 17,000 tons in the Atlantic from all causes, 1 frigate and 1 US escort carrier
- 15 U-boats including 1 by RCAF Bay of Biscay patrol

4th - "U-371" attacked North Africa/US convoy GUS38 off Algeria on the 3rd and was detected, but damaged one of the escorting US destroyers. Throughout the night she was hunted by a mixed group of British, US and French warships including the 'Hunt' "Blankney", and this time managed to torpedo a French destroyer. Later on the 4th "U-371" was s unk northeast of Bougie.

15th - "U-731" on passage through the Strait of Gibraltar was detected by USN Catalinas and lost to attacks by patrol sloop "Kilmarnock" and trawler "Blackfly" of the Gibraltar patrol. No more U-boats made the attempt to get into the Mediterranean.

21st - U-boats gained their last success of the war in the Mediterranean. East of Sicily "U-453" attacked T aranto/Augusta convoy HA43 and its Italian escort and sank one merchant ship. Destroyers "Termagant", "Tenacious" and the 'Hunt' "Liddlesdale" were brought up and sent her to the bottom on the 21st.

Merchant Shipping War - U-boats had on ly managed to sink 10 merchantmen in the Mediterranean in the first five months of 1944. In return 15 had been lost, including three breaking through the Strait of Gibraltar and four in USAAF raids on Toulon and Pola.

Merchant Shipping War - No Allied merchant ships were lost in April and May 1944 throughout the Indian Ocean, but 29 were sunk in the preceding three months, and by never more than six German and four Japanese submarines. In return only four boats including one transport submarine had been sunk. The last was "U-852" off the Gulf of Aden to RAF aircraft on 3rd May.

DEFENCE OF TRADE - June 1943 to May 1944

Total Losses = 324 British, Allied and neutral ships of 1,733,000 tons (144,000 tons per month)

What Do the Results Mean?

The scan gives you a number called an Agatston score. Your doctor may get your results the same day of the test, but it can take longer.

Zero means the test didn’t find any calcium. The higher the number, the more important it is for you and your doctor to come up with a plan.

Your doctor can help you understand what your score means for you. Based on the results, you may need more tests. You might also make changes in:

Keep in mind that a high score doesn’t mean you’re sure to have a heart attack. But it does signal you may need to make some heart-healthy changes to your lifestyle or consider starting a new medication.


Mayo Clinic, “Heart scan (coronary calcium scan).”

National Institutes of Health, National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute, “Explore Coronary Calcium Scan.”

Cleveland Clinic, “Calcium-Score Screening Heart Scan.”

University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health, “Heart Disease Risk: Should I Have a Coronary Calcium Scan?”

German reinforcements from French bases [ edit | edit source ]

  • 17 June 1944: Soviet aircraft sank 1610-ton Dixie and damaged 1112-ton Marga Cords and 7419-ton Florianopolis from a convoy near Hammerfest. ⏮]
  • 17 July 1944: Unsuccessful British carrier attack on Tipitz during Operation Mascot. ⏯]
  • 31 July 1944: Tipitz completed battle damage repair at Altafjord. 𖏜]
  • 12 August 1944: U-365 sank 5685-ton Marina Raskova and Soviet minesweepers T-114 and T-118 in the Kara Sea. 𖏝]
  • 17 August 1944: Soviet aircraft sank two merchant ships near Kirkenes. 𖏞]
  • 19 August 1944: Soviet torpedo cutters sank 3946-ton Colmar from a German convoy near Persfjord. 𖏞]
  • 21 August 1944: U-344 sank convoy JW 59 escort HMS Kite, and was sunk by Swordfish of the covering force aircraft carrier HMS Victorious. 𖏟]
  • 22–29 August: British carrier aircraft repeatedly attack Tipitz during Operation Goodwood, but inflict only light damage. U-354 sank HMS Bickerton and damaged HMS Nabob from the British fleet before being sunk by escorts on 24 August. 𖏟]

USCG cutter Northland operating off Greenland.

  • 1 September 1944: The German weather ship Kehdingen scuttled off Greenland when found by USCGC Northland. 𖏠]
  • 2 September 1944: Convoy RA 59 escorts sank U-394. 𖏟]
  • 6 September 1944: Soviet minesweeper T-116 sank U-362 in the Kara Sea. 𖏡]
  • 16 September 1944: Soviet aircraft sank 3668-ton Wolsum at Kirkenes. Another attack damaged 5434-ton Friesenland off North Cape on 20 September. 𖏢]
  • 23 September 1944: U-957 sank Soviet patrol vessel Brilliant in the Kara Sea, and U-739 sank Soviet minesweeper T-120 with a G7es torpedo on 24 September. 𖏣]
  • 29 September 1944: U-310 sank 7219-ton Samsuva and Liberty ship Edward H. Crockett from convoy RA 60. No. 813 Naval Air Squadron Swordfish F of HMS Campania sank U-921 on 30 September. 𖏤]
  • 11 October 1944: Soviet torpedo cutters sank German minesweeper M-303 off Kiberg. 𖏥]
  • 16 October 1944: United States Coast Guard icebreaker Eastwind captured the German weather ship Externsteine off Greenland. 𖏠]
  • 21 October 1944: Soviet torpedo cutters sank German minesweeper M-31 off Honningsvåg. 𖏦]

Soviet Northern Fleet ships carrying landing parties for the Petsamo–Kirkenes Offensive.


The Penal Code enacted by the California State Legislature in February 1872 was derived from a penal code proposed by the New York code commission in 1865 which is frequently called the Field Penal Code after the most prominent of the code commissioners, David Dudley Field II (who did draft the commission's other proposed codes). [1] The actual drafter of the New York penal code was commissioner William Curtis Noyes, a former prosecutor. [1] New York belatedly enacted the Field Penal Code in 1881.

Prior to the promulgation of the Model Penal Code in 1962, the Field Penal Code was by far the most broadly influential attempt at codification of criminal law, but was severely flawed in that it actually continued many muddled common law concepts (like malice aforethought) when the point of codification was to clean up the common law. [1] About this, UC Berkeley law professor Sanford H. Kadish wrote in 1987: "None of the codes I have considered had a larger measure of influence. None deserved it less." [1] Before the enactment of the Penal Code, California relied on common law definitions of crimes as well as the accumulated case law that went back to the British common law of post-colonial times.

Like most of California’s codes, the Penal Code is divided into parts, with the Penal Code containing six, [2] most of which contain titles, some of which are in turn subdivided into chapters, with individual sections comprising the smallest unit of content. Unlike sections of the United States Code, any particular provision of the Penal Code is usually referenced by its section number alone, especially when a police officer in the state refers to a particular criminal act over their radio. Most of this article deals exclusively with the substantive criminal law set out in Part 1.

The first two titles of Part 1, up to Section 33, are preliminary and provide definitions of legal terms rather than definitions of, or punishments for, any specific crimes. The next group of titles, through Section 88, deal with crimes against the state itself, such as treason. Title 7, ending with Section 186, covers the state court system and crimes that can be committed therein, such as perjury. Title 8 covers the subject of violent crimes, and extends through Section 249. Title 9 (Sections 250 through 368) deals with offenses against public morals and decency. Title 10 (Sections 369 through 402) is devoted to "crimes against public health and safety," while Title 11 (Sections 403–423) is reserved for "crimes against the public peace." The topic of Title 12 (Sections 424–440) is crimes against public revenue, and of Title 13 (Sections 441 through 593), crimes against property. Title 14 (Sections 594–625) bears the heading "Malicious Mischief," but in addition to vandalism (Section 594), it also includes such offenses as trespassing (in Section 602). Title 15 (Sections 625–653) deals with "Miscellaneous Crimes," Title 16 (Sections 654-678) is labeled "General Provisions," and the last title of Part 1, Title 17 (679 and 680) delineates the "Rights of Victims and Witnesses of Crime."

Part 2 of the Penal Code (Sections 681–1020) codifies the state's criminal procedure system.

Part 3 of the Penal Code (Sections 2000–10007) codifies statutes governing the state's corrections system. Part 3 includes provisions governing the operation of the county jails and state prisons, as well as the administration of the death penalty.

Part 4 of the Penal Code (Sections 11006–14315) codifies statutes governing criminal investigations, prison officer training, police officer training, crime control, crime prevention, and gun control.

Part 5 of the Penal Code (Sections 15001–15003) consists of only two sections authorizing the California Peace Officers Memorial Foundation to establish and maintain a memorial to peace officers on the grounds of the state Capitol with private funds.

Part 6 of the Penal Code (Sections 16000–34370) codifies statutes dealing with the management of weapons.

California's drug laws are not found within the Penal Code at all, but in a separate enactment, the California Health and Safety Code. Likewise, provisions affecting motorists, motor vehicles, and traffic matters are contained in the California Vehicle Code.

  • 148 – Resisting/obstructing a police officer
  • 187 – Murder
  • 192 – Manslaughter
  • 203 – Mayhem
  • 207 – Kidnapping
  • 211 – Robbery
  • 215 – Carjacking
  • 219 – Train wrecking (see, e.g.2005 Glendale train crash)
  • 236–237 – False imprisonment
  • 240 – Assault
  • 242 – Battery
  • 245 – Assault with a deadly weapon (ADW, sometimes "great bodily injury," GBI) or with force likely to produce great bodily injury
  • 261 – Rape
  • 280 – Child abduction
  • 285 – Incest
  • 288 – Child molestation
  • 314 – Indecent exposure
  • 368 – Crimes Against Elders and Dependent Adults
  • 415 – Disturbing the peace/mutual combat
  • 417 – Brandishing a firearm
  • 422 – Criminal threats
  • 451 – Arson
  • 459 – Burglary
  • 470 – Forgery
  • 484 – Theft or larceny
  • 487 – Grand theft
  • 488 – Petty theft
  • 487 – Grand theft auto
  • 496 – Receiving stolen property
  • 503–515 – Embezzlement
  • 518–527 – Extortion
  • 528–539 – False personation and cheats
  • 594 – Malicious mischief/vandalism
  • 597 – Animal cruelty
  • 602 – Trespassing
  • 647(b) – Prostitution
  • 647(f) – Public drunkenness or public intoxication
  • 664 – Attempt (usually charged together with one of the above like 187 or 211 attempted murder was formerly covered in its own section, 217)
  • 691 – Extortion

"420" for marijuana use is commonly but incorrectly believed to originate from the Penal Code. [3] The actual Section 420 covers obstructing entry on public land.

One of the more controversial sections of the California Penal Code are the consecutive Sections 666 and 667 Section 666, known officially as petty theft with a prior – and colloquially, felony petty theft and makes it possible for someone who committed a minor shoplifting crime to be charged with a felony if the person had been convicted of any theft-related offense at any time in the past and if the person so charged has two previous felony convictions (listed as serious or violent felonies ["strikeable" offenses]), this can result in a 25-years-to-life sentence under the state's three strikes law, which is found in Section 667.


Title I: Findings, Declarations and Definitions Edit

Title I provides the intent of Congress to provide continued and orderly assistance from the federal government to state and local governments to relieve hardship and damage that result from disasters. As defined by Title I, an emergency is "any occasion or instance for which, in the determination of the President, Federal assistance is needed to supplement State and local efforts and capabilities to save lives and to protect property and public health and safety, or to lessen or avert the threat of a catastrophe in any part of the United States A major disaster is defined as any natural catastrophe, fire, flood, or explosion, determined by the president to warrant the additional resources of the federal government to alleviate damages or suffering they cause". [4]

Title II: Disaster Preparedness and Mitigation Assistance Edit

Title II authorizes the President to establish a disaster preparedness program that utilizes the appropriate agencies and gives the President the right to provide technical assistance to states in order to complete a comprehensive plan to prepare against disasters. The President can also administer grants to states to provide funding for the preparation and revitalization of emergency plans.

Title II articulates the necessity of a disaster warning system. This includes the readiness of all appropriate federal agencies to issue warnings to state and local authorities and the disbursement of warnings to the public. This title authorizes the President to make use of either the civil defense communication system or any commercial communications systems that are voluntarily given to the president to issue warnings to the public. [2]

Predisaster hazard mitigation plans were also detailed in Title II. Under this title, the President can establish a program to provide financial assistance to states through the National Predisaster Mitigation Fund. States can then develop a mitigation plan that can lessen the impact of a disaster on the public health, infrastructure, and economy of the community. The President can also establish a federal interagency task force to implement predisaster mitigation plans administered by the federal government. The director of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) serves as the chairperson of the task force. Other members of the task force include relevant federal agencies, state and local organizations, and the American Red Cross. [2]

Title III: Major Disaster and Emergency Assistance Administration Edit

Title III explains that upon the declaration of a major disaster or emergency, the President must appoint a federal coordinating officer to help in the affected area. This coordinating officer helps make initial appraisals of the types of relief most needed, establishes field offices, and coordinates the administration of relief among the state, localities, and nonprofits. The President must also form emergency support teams staffed with federal personnel. These support teams are sent to affected areas to help the federal coordinating officer carry out his or her responsibilities. The President also helps with the establishment of regional support teams. Title three also explains the reimbursement process for expenditures by federal agencies under the Act.

The federal government is not liable for any claims based on "the exercise or performance of or the failure to exercise or perform a discretionary function or duty on the part of Federal agency or an employee of the Federal Government in carrying out the provisions of this Act". [2] In general, the expenditure of federal funds for debris clearance, reconstruction, or other emergency assistance which is carried out by contract with private organizations or firms is given to those organizations and firms already residing in or doing business in the affected area.

Title III explains the government's nondiscrimination requirements. The President has the right to issue and alter regulations affecting the guidance of personnel carrying out federal assistance in affected areas. These regulations include provisions for ensuring that the distribution of supplies, processing of applications, and other relief activities are accomplished in the fair and impartial way without discrimination on the grounds of color, race, nationality, sex, religion, age, disability, economic status, or English proficiency. [2] It also explains that no geographic areas can be precluded from federal assistance by any type of scale based on income or population.

Penalties are set forth in this title. Any person who misuses the funds obtained under the Act may be fined up to one and one-half times the amount that they misused. The Attorney General may also bring a civil action for relief. Any individual who knowingly violates any part of this Act can be subject to a civil penalty of no more than $5,000 per violation.

The last portion of Title III sets forth the requirements of mitigation plans. Each plan developed by a local or tribal government must both describe actions to mitigate hazards and risks identified under the plan and it must establish a strategy to implement those actions. State plans must do four things. The first is to describe the actions to mitigate hazards and risks identified under the plan. Then it must show a way to support the development of a local mitigation plan. The plan must then show how it will provide technical assistance to its local and tribal governments for mitigation plans. Lastly, it must identify and prioritize the mitigation actions that it will support as its resources become available. [2] The President must allow for sufficient public notice and time for public comment before implementing any new or modified policy under this Act that governs the implementation of any public assistance program or that could result in a major reduction of assistance under the public assistance program.

The President shall appoint a Small State and Rural Advocate whose main responsibility is to ensure the fair treatment of small states and rural communities in the provision of assistance under the Act. The advocate may also help small states prepare requests for emergency declarations.

Title IV: Major Disaster Assistance Programs Edit

The procedures for declaring a major disaster are to be made by the governor of the state. When a disaster occurs, the governor executes the state's emergency plan. If the Governor then decides that the disaster is of such severity that the state and affected local governments cannot possibly handle the effects of the disaster, the Governor will make a request to the President explaining the amount of resources they currently have available and commit to the cost-sharing requirements in the Stafford Act. The President can then declare a major disaster or emergency in the affected area.

Title IV sets out the authority of the President during major disasters or emergencies. The president has many powers under this act. These powers include, but are limited to: directing any federal agency to help the affected area (including precautionary evacuations), coordinating all disaster relief assistance, providing technical and advisory assistance (issuing warnings, providing for the public health and safety, and participating in recovery activities), distributing medicine, food and other supplies, and providing accelerating federal assistance when the President deems it necessary. Lastly, the President can also provide any emergency communications or public transportation that an affected location might need. The federal share of these types of assistance is no less than 75 percent of the eligible costs. [2] The President has the ability to contribute up to 75 percent of the cost of any state or local hazard mitigation effort that is deemed as cost-effective and substantially reducing the risk of a major disaster.

During a major disaster the Governor may request that the President direct the Secretary of Defense to use the resources of the United States Department of Defense for the purposes of any emergency work. This work is only allowed to be carried out for 10 days. Emergency work is defined as "clearance and removal of debris and wreckage and temporary restoration of essential public facilities and services". [2] Title IV also provides a framework for many essential governmental functions during an emergency including legal services, relocation assistance, distribution of food coupons and unemployment assistance.

If, during an emergency, a local government has lost such a substantial amount of revenues that they cannot perform essential government responsibilities, the President is authorized to provide Community Disaster Loans. The loan amounts are based on need and cannot exceed either (1) 25 percent of the annual operating budget of that local government for the fiscal year in which the disaster occurs and not exceeding $5,000,000, or (2) if the loss of tax and other revenues of the local government as a result of the disaster is at least 75 percent of the annual operating budget of the local government for that fiscal year, 50 percent of the annual operating budget of that local government for the fiscal year in which the disaster occurs, not exceeding $5,000,000. [2]

The federal government will not have the authority to impede the access of an essential service provider to an area impacted by a major disaster. A major service provider is defined as either: a telecommunications service, electrical services, natural gas, water and sewer services, or, is a municipal entity, nonprofit entity, or private entity that is responding to the disaster. [2]

Types of housing assistance are identified under this title. The President can provide financial assistance to be used for individuals wishing to rent alternate housing during a time of emergency. The President may also provide temporary housing units directly to the displaced citizens affected by a major disaster. This type of assistance ends after the 18-month period beginning on the date the President declares the major disaster. The President does have the authority to extend the period if he deems it necessary. The President may also provide funds for the repair or replacement of owner-occupied housing damaged by a major disaster. The federal share of the costs eligible for housing assistance is 100 percent. [2]

Title V: Emergency Assistance Programs Edit

Title V explains the process a state must follow to request that the President declare an emergency. Every request for the President to declare an emergency must come from the governor of the state. In order for a request to be made, the Governor must deem that the situation is beyond the potential for the state to manage. To do this, the Governor must begin execution of the state's emergency plan and detail the types and amount of federal aid that will be required. Upon receiving this information the President can then decide if the situation qualifies as an emergency. The President does have the authority to declare an emergency without the Governor's request if the President determines that the emergency falls within the primary responsibility of the United States exclusive or preeminent responsibility as governed by the United States Constitution or laws. [2]

The specific abilities of the President are also explained in this Title. The President can direct any federal agency to use its resources to aid the state or local government in emergency assistance efforts. He also has the responsibility to coordinate all disaster relief assistance and assist with the distribution of food, medicine and other vital supplies to the affected public. The President can provide assistance with debris removal and provide any needed emergency assistance. This Title also gives the President the authority to provide accelerated federal assistance when it has not yet been requested.

The federal share of the costs of such efforts is to be no less than 75 percent of the eligible costs. [2] Total assistance under this Act for one emergency is to be limited to no more than $5 million, except when the President determines additional funds are needed. If additional funds are needed, the President must report to Congress on the extent of the additional need. [2]

Title VI: Emergency Preparedness Edit

Title VI explains the measures that have to be undertaken to prepare for anticipated hazards including creating operational plans, recruiting and training personnel, conducting research, stockpiling necessary materials and supplies, creating suitable warning systems, and constructing shelters. During a hazard, governments are expected to evacuate personnel to shelter areas, control traffic and panic, and control use of civil communications. After a hazard has occurred, governments must provide services such as fire fighting, rescue, emergency medical, health and sanitation. They must also remove debris and repair or restore essential facilities.

Title VI also sets out the authority and responsibilities of the director of FEMA. The director may prepare and direct federal plans and programs for U.S. emergency preparedness. The director should also delegate emergency responsibilities to federal agencies and state and local governments. Conducting research and training is another responsibility of the director of FEMA. Research should address issues such as shelter design, effective design of facilities and the standardization of those designs, and plans that acknowledge the needs of individuals with pets and service animals during an emergency. [2] Training should be provided for emergency preparedness officials and other organizations who participate in emergency situations.

One responsibility of the FEMA director is to oversee the development and follow through of emergency preparedness compacts, otherwise known as Emergency Management Assistance Compacts (EMACs). "The Emergency Management Assistance Compact (EMAC) is an interstate mutual aid agreement that was developed out of the need to assist and coordinate resources across states in the event of a disaster situation." [5] These compacts strive to deliver materials and services quickly to affected areas during an emergency. These plans must be submitted to the Senate and House of Representatives. [2]

The FEMA director has the ability to give financial contributions to the states for emergency preparedness purposes. These purposes typically include construction, leasing, and renovating of materials and facilities. [2] The amount contributed by the director must be equally matched by the state from any source it finds is consistent with its laws. [2] Any contribution given to a state for shelters or other protective facilities is determined by taking the total amount of funds available to the FEMA director for these facilities in a fiscal year and apportioning it among the states in a ratio. "The ratio which the urban population of the critical target areas (as determined by the Director) in each state, at the time of the determination, bears to the total urban population of the critical target areas of all of the States." [2] The states must also equally match these funds. If they cannot, the director may reallocate the funds to another state. The director must also report to Congress at least once a year regarding all the financial contributions made for emergency preparedness.

Title VI then explains the requirements for an emergency preparedness plan. The plan must be in effect in all political subdivisions of the state. It must also be mandatory and supervised by a single state agency. The plan must make known that the state must share financial responsibility with the federal government from any source it has determined is consistent with its state laws. It must also provide for the creation of a state and local emergency preparedness plan and the employment of a full-time emergency preparedness director or deputy director by the state. An emergency preparedness plan must also make available to the director of FEMA and the Comptroller General any records, books, or papers necessary to conduct an audit. Lastly, a plan must include a way to provide emergency preparedness information to the public (included limited English speakers and those with disabilities) in an organized manner. [2]

The last portion of Title VI addresses security regulations. No FEMA employee is allowed to be in a position of critical importance, as defined by the director of FEMA, until a full field investigation of the employee is completed. Every federal employee of FEMA acting under the authority of Title VI, except those in the United Kingdom or Canada, must complete a loyalty oath as follows:

"I______, do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion and that I will well and faithfully discharge the duties upon which I am about to enter.

"And I do further swear (or affirm) that I do not advocate, nor am I a member or an affiliate of any organization, group, or combination of persons that advocates the overthrow of the Government of the United States by force or violence and that during such time as I am a member of ________ (name of emergency preparedness organization), I will not advocate nor become a member or an affiliate of any organization, group, or combination of persons that advocates the overthrow of the Government of the United States by force or violence." [2]

Title VII: Miscellaneous Edit

Title VII gives the President the authority to determine any rule or regulation that may be necessary to carry out the powers that he is given in the Act. This can be either through a federal agency, or any other means the President sees fit.

Payment deadlines were also established under this Title. Payment of any approved assistance is to be distributed within 60 days of the approval. [2] Any donation, bequest, or gift received under the subsection is to be deposited into a separate fund on the books of the United States Department of the Treasury. [2] Disaster grant closeout procedures under this Title explain that there should be no administrative action in an attempt to recover any payments made to state or local governments for emergency assistance under the Act until three years after the final expenditure report has been transmitted for that emergency. [2]

Firearm policies prohibit the confiscation of firearms for any reason other than failure to comply with federal law or as evidence in an investigation. It also prohibits the forced registration of a firearm for which registration is not required by any federal, state, or local law. [2] The Title also lays out the rights and legal framework for citizens who feel their gun rights have been violated during a time of emergency.

The Act also dictates that, in matters of disasters, the federal government is to treat Puerto Rico as a state. [6]

The Disaster Recovery Reform Act of 2018 (DRRA) Edit

Inadequate disaster preparation and response motivated the 2018 DRRA, which significantly amended the Stafford Act. Mainly, it expanded eligibility for hazard mitigation funding by allowing the President to contribute up to 75% of the cost of hazard mitigation measures that they determine to be cost effective and increasing resilience, and to set aside funding for pre-disaster mitigation from the Disaster Relief Fund. [ citation needed ] [ clarification needed ] It also expanded eligibility for both recipients and providers of disaster relief funds in certain areas. [7]

There are diffuse criticisms of the Stafford Act. The Institute for Southern Studies has stated that the Act needs to give greater latitude to FEMA on how it responds to disasters that are extraordinarily devastating such as Hurricane Katrina. [8] This is especially true for FEMA's ability to provide financial assistance in the form of grants to states and localities suffering after such a disaster. The Institute for Southern Studies has also noted the red tape that has been associated with the Stafford Act in the Hurricane Katrina recovery efforts. In an article for Frontline, many others agreed that the process of handing out aid was hindered by bureaucratic red tape. [9] This leads to a rather slow response from Washington to diagnose and resolve issues with recovery efforts.

Returning buildings to exact pre-disaster conditions was the basis of a criticism by the authors of the Frontline article. Including the provision in the Stafford Act that requires buildings that are destroyed to be rebuilt the same way that they were standing before the disaster occurred. For example, if a 50-year-old hospital was destroyed during a disaster, the Stafford Act would require the building to be constructed exactly how it was without any updates to the building. This was remedied by the 2018 DRRA.

Other criticisms of the Stafford Act focus on human rights issues that are present during emergencies and recovery efforts. The Stafford Act does not require that the federal government ensure displaced persons have the ability to participate in governmental decisions that affect the recovery efforts. [10] This includes not only access to public forums about recovery planning and management, but the Stafford Act also does not address voting rights or civic participation issues for those who are displaced during a disaster. [10]

Some argue that while the Stafford Act allows the government to provide housing and medical assistance, it does not require it to do so. Any housing, education, or healthcare provided during an emergency and the recovery efforts are provided at the sole discretion of the federal government. [10] Even the rebuilding of medical facilities is discretionary. [10]

While the Stafford Act gives instructions about the needs of the disabled and animals during an emergency, it does not specify any requirements for children or the elderly. These groups may have extenuating circumstances that could prevent them from following the same emergency protocol as an average adult. [3]

  • La Union del Pueblo Entero v. Federal Emergency Management Agency
  • Davis v. United States
  • Freeman v. United States
  • Saint Tammany Parish v. Federal Emergency Management Agency
  • McCue v. City of New York
  • Davidson v. Veneman
  • Hawaii v. Federal Emergency Management Agency
  • Cougar Business Owners Association v. Washington State

One proposed amendment to the Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act is the Federal Disaster Assistance Nonprofit Fairness Act of 2013 (H.R. 592), a bill that passed in the U.S. House of Representatives on February 13, 2013, during the 113th United States Congress. The bill would make religious organizations and religious non-profits eligible to receive federal funding for repairs and rebuilding of their facilities after a major disaster. [11] The bill passed the House by a large margin, but was criticized by opponents for using taxpayer money to help tax-exempt organizations and for violating the principle of separation of church and state.

In 2015, the Stafford Act was used in an episode of House of Cards as a way for President Frank Underwood to fund his signature jobs program, AmericaWorks. In the episode, Underwood used Stafford Act funds under a Title V declaration of emergency for the District of Columbia, citing high unemployment as a disaster in the District. Under Title V of the Act, the president may make an emergency declaration on behalf of an area that is under Federal jurisdiction, which includes Washington, DC. He directed FEMA and other cabinet departments to use the Stafford Funds for jobs programs in the District.


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