Salem Express Shipwreck Safaga, Egypt information, tours, booking
Salem Express Shipwreck is a big wreckage which located in the Red Sea of Safaga, Egypt. In fact, Salem Express shipwreck is one of the most controversial wreck dives in the Red Sea. It is due to the tragic loss of life which occurred. In fact, it sank shortly after midnight on December 17th 1991. Salem Express built in the French shipyards of La Seyne in 1964. It launched under the name of Fred Scamaroni in 1966. Moreover, the ship was a roll on and off ferry for vehicles and passengers as well. Furthermore, the ship featured 100 meters long, 18 meters beam and 5 meters draft. The ship’s bow encompassed a lifting mechanism. In fact, it designed to pivot the entire forward bow upwards.
Meanwhile, ramps then lowered to allow vehicles and passengers to embark through its nose. In fact, it was directly forward of the raised bridge section on its upper deck. This lifting mechanism became a major contributing factor in its tragic loss. In fact, it was some 25 years after its launch. In 16 December 1991, Salem Express operated as a passenger ferry, based in the port of Safaga. On the evening of December 17th 1991, it was returning from the port of Jeddah in Saudi Arabia. In fact, it overloaded with several vehicles and hundreds of pilgrims. They returning from their pilgrimage from Mecca. The ship was nearing the end of its journey. In fact, it approached the port of Safaga from the southeast. A storm had been building for some hours and was now blowing at gale force.
Further details about Salem Express Shipwreck:
Then, Salem Express struck the southeast part of a reef chain which known as Hyndman Reef. In fact, it was with catastrophic force. The ship sank fully to the seabed in 30 meters of water. In fact, it is close to the reef truck in as little as 10 minutes. Moreover, the ship rests today on its starboard side with its bow door gaping open. The demise of the ship happened with such speed that none of the lifeboats had time to launch. In fact, 470 pilgrims, 180 passengers and most of the crew died. The massive loss of life alone makes this one of the worst tragedies in the Red Sea. Salem Express shipwreck features a few box-fish and pipe-fish and the occasional lone jack. In fact, the shipwreck also features indeed an impressive dive due to the size of the wreck.
Diving the Salem Express Shipwreck is a unique experience which is not like any wreck else. In fact, it is like no other wreck in the Red Sea. Moreover, the ship’s port side is just 12 meters from the surface. Moreover, it is with its starboard side which lies on the seabed at a depth of 30 meters. Furthermore, Salem Express Shipwreck also features personal effects and luggage. Moreover, it also comprises rolls of carpet, portable stereos, even bicycles and pushchairs. Several of its lifeboats lie upright and intact where they fell from their davits to the sea floor. If you dive Salem Express shipwreck, you will have the chance to see its big structures. The restaurant, bridge and upper decks now lie perpendicular to the seabed. In fact, they are accessible.
More details about Salem Express Shipwreck:
Many parts of Salem Express Shipwreck are fragile and susceptible to careless buoyancy control. In fact, over the years, Salem Express Shipwreck became clear. So, all who dive do not leave this wreck as they found it. The closes suitcases are now open and lots of personal items moved. It is particularly in the 3 main corridors within the ship. Any penetration of Salem Express Shipwreck should done within a divers experience. Salem Express Shipwreck features two large propellers which are intact. In fact, they are at the stern of the ship.
Moreover, it is possible to swim under the stern from the keel to the rear deck. The tables in the restaurant still fixed to the deck. Furthermore, much of the ceiling collapsed towards the seabed. Do the deepest part of your dive at the seabed on the deck side. You’ll swim over the lifeboats before and under the two funnels. Many of the glass windows gone and the ships controls are visible. As you reach the bow you’ll see the bow door is wide open. Moreover, at the seabed on the starboard side the extent of the damage clearly visible.
Salem Express Shipwreck diving site facts:
- Dive Site: The Salem Express.
- Location: Hyndman Reef (26º39’01″N; 34º03’48″E).
- Description: Roll-on roll-off ferry.
- Length: 100 meters (300 feet).
- Depth: 12 – 30 meters (39 – 100 feet)
- Visibility: 20 meters (65 feet).