Vegetable, Oil and Wine Tanker
Due to the recent bad weather any diving had been done very close to shore. The Caroni Rivers lies almost two miles offshore, we had tried to get there the previous Friday but the wind stopped us. So we decided to try again on Tuesday evening. The Caroni Rivers was on equipment trials after being repaired in Falmouth when the 138m long ship hit a magnetic mine.
We left Falmouth on Westbay Lass, a little later than planned, and headed out hoping that the wind had died down enough. It was getting late and by the time I was in the water it was 19:45, being cloudy above as well as being so late made it very dark down there.
Jason dropped us near the boilers, which seemed strange for an oil tanker! There are no boilers visible, although there are some plates that do look remarkably like boiler ends. After checking records the Caroni Rivers was an 8 cylinder heavy oil engined ship. There are the remains of a trawler mixed in with the Caroni Rivers, which would account for the boiler looking plates, they could have been from the trawler.
Looking around it is more like a scrap yard, bits and pieces of bent metal cover the sea bed. The Caroni Rivers lies in 3 pieces, I have been told that the other pieces are quite flat too. The dive was done at a constant depth of around 24m, as there isn’t to much to swim over. I did see two Conger Eels, Pink Sea Fans, Dead Mans Fingers, Cup Corals and several types of Wrasse.
The site is quite popular with the local dive operators as it is close to shore and it is a fairly easy dive. Unfortunately the visibility wasn’t very good on this dive at around 4m, that combined with the ambient darkness meant that we couldn’t see that far. It would be interesting to do it in better light, no doubt that will be soon.