MTB 262

Motor Torpedo Boats (MTB)
David Carter
Chief Petty Officer
Posts: 60
Joined: Tue Jan 18, 2011 6:06 pm

MTB 262

Postby David Carter » Mon Feb 24, 2014 5:31 pm

I see that on today's (24 February) in memoriam, there were several men killed on this boat. What was the action?

Pioneer
Moderator
Posts: 310
Joined: Sun Oct 19, 2008 12:48 pm

Re: MTB 262

Postby Pioneer » Mon Feb 24, 2014 8:18 pm

Hello David
The tragedy that befell MTB 262 is fully described in “Mediterranean MTB’s at War” by L.C. Reynolds and H.H. Cooper Basically; she was on an independent Mine laying operation off the Coast of Galita Island. This was a ‘working up’ exercise after major repairs when, to the CO’s horror (Lt R. C. Coles RNVR), there was a complete failure of her electrical system. Unable to start her engines and drifting perilously close to the enemy held Island a decision was made to scuttle her. After placing demolition charges, to prevent her falling into enemy hands, the crew launched Assault boats, the idea being to row or paddle the boats to the African coast, about 30 miles away.
However, a very heavy sea was running and the Assault boats quickly became swamped. A decision was made to return to the MTB; Sub Lt Piper, a very strong swimmer, was detailed to try and reach the boat and remove the detonators from the scuttling charges, he succeeded, throwing the detonators overboard.
Those still struggling in the water tried to scramble aboard, however, three members were unable to make it and drowned.
A Luftwaffe patrol aircraft spotted the plight of 262; Lt Coles reasoned that this would probably lead to the capture of the boat, so roping the men together they tried to swim to the island after first making sure that the boat would sink more quickly.
Two more men died at this time – the rest being picked up by an enemy rescue boat - to be interned as POW’s.
The Cox'n, Petty Officer Percy Ward, managed to escape (and was awarded the BEM) but the full story would not be told until after the War had ended with the release of the CO, Lt Coles RNVR.

A very sad story indeed.

David Carter
Chief Petty Officer
Posts: 60
Joined: Tue Jan 18, 2011 6:06 pm

Re: MTB 262

Postby David Carter » Mon Feb 24, 2014 8:52 pm

Thanks Pioneer. A tragic catalogue of events. DC

CAM
Sub Lieutenant
Posts: 77
Joined: Sat Mar 29, 2014 8:49 am

Re: MTB 262

Postby CAM » Fri Apr 03, 2015 6:45 am

P. Smith wrote that night, September 14, 1942 MTB 262 together with the MTB 260, 261 and 316 were trying to get through the boom in Tobruk and while three of them fired at targets in the harbour torpedo. But what kind of boat, and when the time — it is not written. What is known about this episode?


Return to “Motor Torpedo Boats”

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 4 guests

cron