Irish Sail Training Vessel Asgard II Sinks in Bay of Biscay

by OldSailor on September 12, 2008


asgard_poster asgard_ii

The 27 year old Irish Sail Training Vessel Asgard II has sunk in Bay of Biscay on September 10, near the port of La Rochelle due to rapid flooding. Fortunately all the crew and trainees were saved by French Coast Guard. The vessel was sailing from Falmouth in Britain to La Rochelle on a routine training mission. Irish and French authorities have decided to carry out a joint investigation into the sinking of sail training vessel, Asgard II.

Here are some details on Sail Training Vessel Asgard II:

  • The name “Asgard” is an old Norse word meaning “Home of the Gods”.
  • The specially designed sail training ship was built in Arklow, Co Wicklow and was commissioned on March 07, 1981.
  • Ship specifications:
    • Vessel Type: Brigantine
    • LOA: 32 metres
    • Breadth: 22 feet
    • Gross Tonnage: 92.6
    • Forward Draught: 2.4 metres
    • Aft Draught: 3 metres
    • No. of trainees: 20
    • Male/Female Ratio: Usually 1:1
    • Permanent Crew: 5
  • Photographs of Asgard II are available here.
  • Take Virtual tour of Asgard II from here.

Here is a video from a French Coastguard Helicopter of the Asgard in distress and her liferafts.

For more information on the sinking of the vessel read Irish Times.

Update: September 13

Two separate inquiries have commenced into the sinking of the Irish sail-training vessel Asgard II. Read more from The Old Blog Cabin.

Also Tim has come out with his experience on Asgard II (17 years back). Read more from Tims Times.

Update: September 14

Asgard II was an ambassador for Ireland, winning numerous legs of tall ships races, crossing the Atlantic on several occasions and sailing to Australia in 1988. Read more from Irish Times.

Update: October 10

There are bright chances of salvaging the sail training ship Asgard II, as underwater inspection by Remotely Operated Vehicle (ROV) has confirmed that the hull is upright and “largely intact” on the seabed in the Bay of Biscay. Read more from Irish Times.

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