HMAS Waterhen (D22)

HMAS Waterhen (D22)

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HMAS Waterhen (D22)

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HMAS Waterhen (D22/I22) was a W class destroyer that served in the Royal Navy (as HMS Waterhen (G28/D22)) and the Royal Australian Navy (RAN). Built during World War I, the destroyer was completed in mid 1918, and commissioned into the Royal Navy. In 1933, Waterhen and four other British ships were transferred to the RAN. The ship's early RAN career was uneventful, with periods spent decommissioned in reserve, but she was reactivated in September 1939, and deployed to the Mediterranean as part of the Australian destroyer force: the Scrap Iron Flotilla. During her time in the Mediterranean, Waterhen was involved in escort and patrol duties, performed shore bombardments, and participated in Allied evacuations from Greece and Crete. On 29 June 1941, while operating with the Tobruk Ferry Service, Waterhen was heavily damaged by Axis aircraft. Attempts to tow the ship to port were unsuccessful, and she sank on 30 June; the first RAN ship lost to combat in World War II.

Design and construction

Waterhen was a W class destroyer constructed for the Royal Navy during World War I.Cassells, The Destroyers, p. 194 The ship had a displacement of 1,100 tons at standard load, was in length overall and long between perpendiculars, had a beam of , and a maximum draught of . Propulsion machinery consisted of three Yarrow boilers feeding two Brown-Curtis turbines, which provided to the two propeller shafts.<ref...
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