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Precis File
source HOOKE
type A
volume 32000LT
dead 2

While on voyage from La Salina to Antwerp with a cargo of crude oil, the Liberian steam tanker Golden Drake caught fire after a violent explosion some 1200 miles east of Bermuda in lat 31.24N, long 38.35W on January 28, 1972. Two crew died. The remaining 35 managed to abandon ship, being rescued by the Venezuelan motor vessel Caracas. The Golden Drake, blazing in Nos 1 and 2 tanks and forecastle, continued to drift until being taken in tow on jan 30. However, the towline was dropped three days later with the tanker's foredeck awash. She continued to drift until being reported to have sunk on March 1.

source CTX
type D
volume 32000LT

Reported explosion on board 28 Jan 1972. Crew rescued by Venezuelan vessel. Coast Guard extinguished fires on 30 January. Attempt to tow abandoned on 4 February after bow had become awash. Vessel sank on 1 March 31 02N 38 34 W.

One source says location Bermuda but site of sinking given above is way to the east of Bermuda.

It's pretty clear the explosion was well forward. This ship was one of the ill-fated Bulkpetrol class. When the Bulkpetrol was built in 1948, she was the largest tanker ever built, and all welded ships were still a novelty. See Keo, Pacocean. Possible cause was a structural failure leading to fire, but we need more info. There must have been a USCG report.

We need Class records.