South Co. Down Wreck List "A"
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Vessel Type:

Steam Coaster

Location:Co. Down
Date of Loss:18th March 1915Place:Burial Island
Cause of Loss:Sank in stormBoat Dive from:Ballyhalbert
Charted Depth:22mIrish O.S. Map:Discovery Series No. 21
Height of Wreck:Broken upAdmiralty Chart No:2156
Hull Material:Steel/IronLatitude (GPS):54° 28' 47.7" North
Type of Seabed:SandLongitude (GPS):05° 24' 59.46" West
Average Visibility:5 - 10mConvert Lat. & Long. to -Decimal - CLICK HERE
Image available?Yes - see below Diving Experience:Experienced
Diving Information:
  • Hulk is still there, sitting upright, but badly broken up.
  • Lies quite close inshore in Butterlump (local name Ballyfrench Bay.)
  • Dive at slack water.
Historical Information:
  • Built 1913 by J. Fullerton Ltd, Paisley, for Joseph Fisher & Sons Ltd, Newry, she measured 168 x 25.5 x 10ft , trials speed 12 knots, grossed 470 tons.
  • While on route from Ayr to Warrenpoint with coal in a snowstorm her cargo shifted while maneuvering and she capsized.
  • Six out of 8 crew drowned.
  • Occupants scrambled into port lifeboat only to be tipped into freezing water.
  • The two who survived were Samuel Hanna and James McShane, who were hauled to safety by a Belfast collier "Ailsa Craig", which had arrived on the scene, and later transferred them to the Donaghadee lifeboat, after they witnessed the "Upas" go down.
  • Captain McFerran was last seen standing high up on the tilting super-structure beside one of the useless starboard lifeboats.

S.S. Upas

© by kind permission of Glasgow University Archive (DC101/1609)


S.S. Upas

Neal James Armstrong - by permission

Source Publications:
"Irish Wrecks Database"
Roy Stokes & Liam Dowling
"Shipwreck Index of Ireland"
Richard & Bridget Larn
Lloyd's Register - Fairplay Ltd 2002 - ISBN: 1900839970
"Shipwrecks of the Irish Coast 1582 - 2000"
Dr. Edward J. Bourke
Edward J. Bourke 2000 - ISBN: 0952302721
"Shipwrecks of the Ulster Coast"
Ian Wilson
Impact Printing 1997 - ISBN: 0948154993
Other Sources:
Vic Foster
Castlereagh SAC (1996)

South Co. Down Wreck List "A"

Last update - 18-Jan-2005

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