On April 15, 1977, while on a ballast passage from Philadelphia
to either Cabinda or Escravos River,
where she was due to load her next oil cargo,
the Liberian steam tanker Universe Defiance
was abandoned by her crew
due to a fire and explosion in her boiler room
off the coast of Guinea in lat 11.55N, long 17.39W.
Nine of her 39 crew members died.
The 30 survivors were rescued by the British motor vessel Laurelbank,
which landed them at Dakar.
The drifting Universe Defiance was then taken in tow
by the tug Seefalke in heavy seas,
but being severely damaged and holed on her port side,
her engine room flooded.
However, after being anchored 12 miles off Dakar,
she underwent an examination.
Structural damage to her hull
in way of cargo tanks Nos. 10, 11, 12, 13 and 14
was reported to be extensive.
As a consequence she was then towed out to sea
and sunk on May 7, some 200 miles off the African coast.