FREE! Click here to Join FunTrivia. Thousands of games, quizzes, and lots more!
Quiz about Shocking Maritime Disasters
Quiz about Shocking Maritime Disasters

Shocking Maritime Disasters Trivia Quiz

Match the name of the maritime disaster with the date and location it occurred.

A matching quiz by nmerr. Estimated time: 3 mins.
  1. Home
  2. »
  3. Quizzes
  4. »
  5. World Trivia
  6. »
  7. Maritime
  8. »
  9. Maritime Disasters

3 mins
Match Quiz
Quiz #
Jun 19 23
# Qns
Avg Score
8 / 10
Top 35% Quiz
Last 3 plays: PDAZ (7/10), Retired2006 (10/10), ArlingtonVA (10/10).
(a) Drag-and-drop from the right to the left, or (b) click on a right side answer box and then on a left side box to move it.
1. December 20, 1987, Tablas Strait  
  MV Wilhelm Gustloff
2. January 30, 1945, Baltic Sea  
  White Ship
3. December 4, 1948, Huangpu River  
  SS Eastland
4. September 26, 2002, Gambia River  
  MV Doa Paz
5. November 25, 1120, English Channel  
  MV Le Joola
6. April 27, 1865, Mississippi River  
  Mont Blanc
7. December 6, 1917, Halifax, Nova Scotia  
  SS Sultana
8. July 24, 1915, Chicago River  
  RMS Lusitania
9. September 26, 1954, Tsugaru Strait  
  Tya Maru
10. May 7, 1915, Old Head of Kinsale, Ireland  
  SS Kiangya

Select each answer

1. December 20, 1987, Tablas Strait
2. January 30, 1945, Baltic Sea
3. December 4, 1948, Huangpu River
4. September 26, 2002, Gambia River
5. November 25, 1120, English Channel
6. April 27, 1865, Mississippi River
7. December 6, 1917, Halifax, Nova Scotia
8. July 24, 1915, Chicago River
9. September 26, 1954, Tsugaru Strait
10. May 7, 1915, Old Head of Kinsale, Ireland

Most Recent Scores
Today : PDAZ: 7/10
Sep 12 2023 : Retired2006: 10/10
Aug 22 2023 : ArlingtonVA: 10/10
Aug 22 2023 : camhammer: 10/10
Aug 18 2023 : maninmidohio: 10/10
Aug 06 2023 : piet: 10/10

Quiz Answer Key and Fun Facts
1. December 20, 1987, Tablas Strait

Answer: MV Doa Paz

The Doa Paz was a Philippine passenger vessel headed for the capital city, Manila. At some point the ferry collided with the oil tanker MT Vector. The collision resulted in a tremendous loss of life. 4,386 passengers died as a result. 26 passengers survived.

Inattentiveness and safety malpractice were to blame for the disaster. As is often the case with disasters at sea, more passengers were on board than reported. 1,493 passengers and 59 crew members were recorded as being on board the Doa Paz. In reality there were closer to 4,000 passengers, with only a capacity for 1,518 passengers. In addition, none of the crew members of the Doa Paz were at their posts when the collision occurred.

As for the Vector, Supreme Court of the Philippines found that the tanker was operating without a license, a lookout, or a qualified master.
2. January 30, 1945, Baltic Sea

Answer: MV Wilhelm Gustloff

Named for a Nazi leader, the MV Wilhelm Gustloff was a military transport ship on its way back from East Prussia (former German province) to Germany when it was hit by three torpedoes. A Soviet submarine was behind the attack.

Capt. Aleksandr Marinesko, a Soviet commander, was strategic in his planning. He placed his submarine between the Gustloff and the coast, an unexpected move. After the torpedoes struck, it took approximately an hour for the ship to sink.

In reality 10,000 were on board the Gustloff, far more than its capacity. There were 1,239 registered survivors. Nine vessels picked up survivors throughout the night of the disaster.
3. December 4, 1948, Huangpu River

Answer: SS Kiangya

Imagine a ship filled with thousands of people suddenly exploding. That's what happened to the SS Kiangya.

The event occurred during the Chinese Civil War. The ship was filled with refugees fleeing Communists in Shanghai and heading for Ningpo, a port city in the Zhejiang province.

Some have speculated that the ship hit a mine placed during World War II. It was also suggested that the Imperial Japanese Navy placed it there.

The ship documented far fewer passengers than were actually on board, a familiar scenario. Unfortunately, in these situations, the potential for loss of life is even greater.

The exact number of deaths is unknown.
4. September 26, 2002, Gambia River

Answer: MV Le Joola

The Joola, a ferry owned by the Senegalese government, capsized off the coast of The Gambia. The Veritas Maritime Assessment agency had previously condemned the ferry as not being seaworthy for a number of reasons. It was overloaded with passengers and the ferry itself was in poor condition. The vehicles in the hold were not properly secured which could have resulted in a navigational error on the part of the captain.

Of the 1,863 people on board the ferry, only 64 survived.
5. November 25, 1120, English Channel

Answer: White Ship

In the year 1120, William Adelin, grandson of William the Conqueror and heir to the thrones of England and Normandy, set sail from France to England aboard the White Ship (la Blanche Nef). He was just seventeen years old.

Thomas FitzStephen was captain of the sailing vessel as well as the owner. By all accounts the ship was in fine working order.

Setting out at night, the ship hit a submerged rock which caused it to capsize and sink. Thomas FitzStephen and William Adelin were among the 300 passengers who drowned that terrible night.
6. April 27, 1865, Mississippi River

Answer: SS Sultana

The SS Sultana was a large side-wheel steamboat built to transport goods and passengers between New Orleans and St. Louis.

On that fateful day of April 27, 1865, three of the four boilers on board exploded. Passengers were either crushed by falling smokestacks or burned in fires resulting from the explosions. Some passengers were thrown overboard by the sheer force of the explosions.

The overcrowded steamship contained civilian passengers, crew members, and paroled prisoners. The captain of the steamship, James Cass Mason, was killed during the explosion.

It was later determined that the cause of the boiler explosions was too much steam pressure and not enough water in the boilers.

Unfortunately, the Sultana disaster was overlooked by events that occurred just before the disaster. Just weeks earlier, General Robert E. Lee surrendered to General Ulysses S. Grant which ultimately ended the American Civil War. President Lincoln was assassinated on April 14. His assassin, John Wilkes Booth, was captured and killed on April 26.

The Sultana was eventually buried on the bottom of the Mississippi River.
7. December 6, 1917, Halifax, Nova Scotia

Answer: Mont Blanc

On that fateful day, the French steamship, Mont Blanc, entered Halifax Harbor in Novia Scotia, Canada, carrying 3,224 tons of explosives. At some point, the Norwegian ship, Imo, headed in the direction of the steamship. The Mont Blanc should have been flying a red flag to signify explosive cargo. By the time the captains could correct their course, the Imo and Mont Blanc collided.

Known as the Halifax Explosion of 1917, the Mont Blanc caught fire from the explosives on board, blowing the ship apart and creating a tsunami. The waves were powerful enough to reach the outskirts of Halifax, destroying over 1600 buildings and scattering debris for miles.

The powerful waves forced the Imo to ground on shore. Fortunately, the ship suffered minimal damage and was repaired and returned to service the following year.

Fragments of the Mont Blanc were salvaged and are on display at the Maritime Museum of the Atlantic in Halifax.
8. July 24, 1915, Chicago River

Answer: SS Eastland

It was meant to be a fun day off for workers at the Western Electric Company's Hawthorne Works factory in Cicero, a suburb of Chicago. On that particular day, July 24, the excursion steamboat, Eastland, was preparing to take passengers to a park 38 miles away in Michigan City, Indiana. While the ship filled with passengers, a dance band played.

While complying with laws regarding the number of passengers legally allowed to board the ship, there were far too many lifeboats and life preservers on board. After all, the Titanic had sunk only a few years earlier without enough life rafts and life preservers to accommodate the majority of passengers and crew. In addition, prior studies had shown the ship was unstable when boarding.

The top-heavy ship began to list while still docked. Efforts to stabilize it proved useless. When it rolled over on its side, hundreds became trapped inside the ship and in the outside waters. Entire families died. Many of the passengers were immigrants.

Loss of life was great. 844 passengers and crew died that fateful day.
9. September 26, 1954, Tsugaru Strait

Answer: Tya Maru

On September 26, 1954, the Tya Maru, a train ferry carrying passengers and train cars, sank during a typhoon in the Tsugaru Strait. Heavy rainfall had delayed the ship from leaving Hakodate, Hokkaido, and returning to Aomori, Honshu.

The weather began to clear, and the captain decided to depart that evening. It was a poor decision. Shortly after departing, gale-force winds and high waves swept the ferry out of the harbor and onto rocks. This caused the ferry to list, enabling water to enter lower decks and the engine room, rendering the engine inoperable.

Cargo trains broke loose from the moorings, crushing passengers. The ferry eventually capsized and sank. Over 1300 passengers were on board but only 150 survived.
10. May 7, 1915, Old Head of Kinsale, Ireland

Answer: RMS Lusitania

The RMS Lusitania, a British ocean liner, left New York for Britain in May 1915. 1,959 passengers and crew were on board. 128 were Americans. Since there had been reports of sinkings of merchant ships on the southern coast of Ireland, the British Admiralty warned the Lusitania to use evasive tactics to avoid encountering U-Boats planning torpedo attacks. William Thomas Turner, captain of the ocean liner, chose not to heed the warning.

On May 7, a torpedo struck the middle of the ship causing damage to the engines and pipes. Twenty minutes later the ship sank, taking with it 1,198 people, 128 of whom were American.

The Germans intended to torpedo the Lusitania and felt justified in doing so because they considered it to be a naval ship carrying weapons of war. Never mind that there were over 1,000 passengers on board.

In 1917 the United States entered World War I, citing the sinking of the Lusitania as one of the reasons for doing so.
Source: Author nmerr

This quiz was reviewed by FunTrivia editor Bruyere before going online.
Any errors found in FunTrivia content are routinely corrected through our feedback system.
10/3/2023, Copyright 2023 FunTrivia, Inc. - Report an Error / Contact Us