Hunting New England Shipwrecks


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u550-panpen-usn.jpg (55053 bytes)

u532-class-IXC.jpg (83552 bytes)

U-550 surfaced while
Pan Pennsylvania burned
(U.S. Navy photo)

U-532 - Another
Type IX-C boat 

u550-location-DailyMail-2012.jpg (84235 bytes)

u550-sonar-image.jpg (53696 bytes)

U-550 wreck location map
(Daily Mail)

U-550 sonar image - 2012
(Brad Sheard's press release)

The table below provides historical and statistical data on the vessel. Some of the information may be incomplete. If you have additions or corrections, please e-mail us at the address listed below.

Shipwreck Data

Vessel Name U-550
Other Names  
Vessel Type German submarine (Type IX-C)
Owner German Navy
Length / Beam / Draft (feet) 232' / 22' / 15'
Tonnage 750
Hull Construction Steel
Propulsion Diesel / Electric / Screw
Built 1943 at Hamburg, Germany (Deutsche Werft AG)
Date of Loss April 16, 1944
Reason for Loss Depth charges and gunfire from American destroyer escorts, following the U-550's torpedo attack on the American tanker Pan Pennsylvania, which was lagging behind its wartime convoy.
Fatalities 44 (12 survivors)
Location Approximately 70 miles south of Nantucket Island (MA), near the wreck of the Pan Pennsylvania. The U-550 wreck was located by divers in 2012. For more information on the U-550, see the U.S. Coast Guard's U-550 data page

Also see...
Brad Sheard's press release 
Daily Mail page  http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2180845/German-U-boat-coast-Massachusetts-68-years-sunk-U-S-Navy.html 
Garry Kozak's site 

For more information on the Pan Pennsylvania, see our Pan Pennsylvania data page. And for more information on U-boats in New England waters, see our page called U-boat Facts and Legends .

Coordinates (Lat/Lon) 40.09N / 69.44W (per U.S. Coast Guard records)
Coordinates (Loran C)  
Water Depth (feet) Approximately 300'
Typical Visibility (feet)  
Wreck Condition Upright and mostly intact
Diving Considerations A very deep dive - for experienced tech divers only
Other Information Immediately after the U-550 torpedoed the Pan Pennsylvania, the destroyer escorts USS Joyce, USS Peterson and USS Gandy, which were accompanying the convoy, hunted down and depth charged the sub. Following the depth charge attack, the wounded sub surfaced, engaged in a brief gun battle, then sank to the ocean floor.
Attention Divers
The information on this page was obtained from a variety of sources. Although we have attempted to make it as accurate as possible, it may contain errors.  For your personal safety, use extreme caution when diving on this wreck.

For more information on this wreck's location and history, and water and diving conditions in the area, contact local dive shop personnel, dive charter boat operators and local fishermen. Also check out the other shipwreck Websites listed on our Favorite Links page.

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Copyright 2001 by Dave Clancy
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