THE GREAT HONG KONG TYPHOON OF 1937.

On the 2nd of September 1937 a typhoon struck Hong Kong and the Chinese mainland, though not the biggest to date, at the time was considered to be the largest in recorded history. British India's Talamba whose career was brought to an abrupt end in 1943 when sunk off Syracuse was amongst those ships damaged and driven ashore. Many fishing boats and junks were sunk along with their crewmembers and twenty-eight ocean going ships were caught up in the storm, an estimated 11,000 people lost their lives.


TALAMBA AGROUND.
P&O Collection

At the time Talamba was chartered to the Chinese Government for the carriage of rice from Rangoon and was anchored at Junk Bay. As the wind speed increased, her Captain managed, with great difficulty, to steer her past two liners but in doing so was himself struck by the Japanese ship Asama Maru by way of her bow and bridge. Losing all control Talamba was driven ashore on the northern side of Lye Mun Pass and her forward holds and engine room, both severely holed were flooded. It wasn't until the 21st of November that Talamba was finally refloated by the Hong Kong and Whampoa Dockyard Salvage Company and after lesser difficulties with a sand bar she finally entered drydock two days later. Talamba re-entered service in the March of the following year.

The following photos record the damage to other vessels during the storm but commences with a rather peaceful one at Taikoo Shipyard.





SS Hong Peng


SS Hong Peng


SS Hong Peng


Close up of damage to SS Hong Peng


Close up of damage to SS Hong Peng


Engineers on Tymeric


Tymeric


Tymeric


Tymeric


Tymeric


Tymeric


House front mooring?

Go to     Typhoon Part Two