The position of seven seamen trapped in a French dredger that overturned in the English Channel was becoming increasingly desperate on Friday (12 October 1973) night.
The position of seven seamen trapped in a French dredger that overturned in the English Channel was becoming increasingly desperate on Friday (12 October 1973) night. High tides were severely tampering the massive rescue effort. Frogmen were unable to achieve their prime objective of drilling a hole in the craft, large enough for the men to emerge through it to safety.
The dredger, the Cap de la Hague, capsized on Thursday three miles (5 kilometres) off Calais in heavy seas. Only two of its ??? of fifteen were picked up alive. Several bodies were recovered and it was only later in the day that faint sounds of tapping and cries for help were heard from within the submerged craft. Frogmen were landed on its hull by helicopter, but managed only to drill a small fresh-air inlet before they were driven off b the heavy seas. Tugboats dragged the dredger around, but on Friday it submerged deeper still and there were grave fears for the lives of the men. Even if they still had enough air, they were in danger of death from exposure.
SYNOPSIS: Hope was fading on Friday evening for the lives of seven seamen trapped inside a submerged French dredger off Calais. It had overturned in storms at dawn on Thursday. Only tow of its crew of fifteen had been picked up. An on-the-sport report of Friday's rescue bid: