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Precis File
SHIP NAME: Olympic Alliance KEY: NUM. ENTRIES: 3
source OSCH
type A
volume 14000,87000B

Shortly after midnight on the morning of November 12, 1975, the tank vessel Olympic Alliance and the Royal Navy Frigate, HMS Achilles collided in Dover Strait. The collision occurred in the northeast traffic lane about 13 miles southeast of Dover, England. One of the Olympic Alliance's cargo tanks was ruptured on impact resulting in the release of 14,000 barrels of Iranian crude oil. The vessels were able to separate without assistance. Visibility at the time of the collision was restricted by fog.

The vessel was reported to have spilled an additional 73,000 barrels of oil between the site of the collision and Wilhelmshaven, West Germany.

source CEDRE
type L
volume 10O00T
material Iranian Light crude

source CTX
type D
volume 1000T
material C

No cause info. Not in Cahill.

Alliance was hit in No 5 starboard, hole near deck, and hole 1 m below waterline.

OSCH has this spill at both 14,000B and 87,000B. CEDRE has the same story, first a spill of 2000T and then another 8000t after resuming trip. Sounds like the 2000T was immediate run-off from the top hole, and the second spill was the tank going to hydrostatic balance from the lower hole. With the top of the hole only 1 m below waterline, ship would lose almost all the oil in the tank unless they did something smart. Amazing they allowed the ship to proceed.

No fire, was 1970 built ship inerted?

We have a picture of the HMS Achilles being repaired in the dry dock. Looks like the bow damage extended back about 5 m. But given that the Alliance was holed only top and bottom, the depth of penetration could not have been that much. This may have been a rare case in which the hittee wins. A strong double side might have prevented this spill.

Need cause, depth of penetration.