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Pasha Bulker Storm Waves Hoax Email

by Brett M. Christensen

Email claims that attached photographs show the bulk carrier Pasha Bulker being inundated by giant waves shortly before it ran aground during a storm near Newcastle, Australia in June 2007.

Brief Analysis:
Real photographs but they are not of the Pasha Bulker.

Subject: Pasha Bulker Cam footage before groundingAmazing pics of Pasha Bulker before it ran aground off Newcastle…..

Detailed Analysis:
These amazing photographs are currently circulating via email and have also been posted online. According to the text that accompanies the photographs, they depict massive waves hitting the Pasha Bulker, a bulk carrier that ran aground during violent storm activity near Newcastle, Australia in June 2007.

However, the photographs are not of the Pasha Bulker. The images were circulating online with alternative descriptions long before the Pasha Bulker ran aground. In fact, the photographs show a ship called the “Selkirk Settler” (now called the “Spruceglen (2)”) and they were taken during a storm more than twenty years ago. The same set of images is featured in an article about the vessel on BoatNerd.com along with the following explanation:

The storm pictures […] were taken during a North Atlantic storm February, 13, 1987 on an eastbound passage from Tampa, Florida to Ghent, Belgium with a load of phosphates. The pictures were taken by Capt. George Ianiev, who was the ship’s Second Mate at the time. The big blue wave was the largest wave the ship encountered during the storm; seeing it hit the ship made the vessel’s master question whether they would survive the storm.

The ship is now owned by Canada Steamship Lines and, these days, her voyagers are mainly on the Great Lakes and the St.Lawrence River.

Although the images do not show the Pasha Bulker, many genuine, and quite spectacular, photographs of the stricken vessel have also been circulating. The salvage of the Pasha Bulker has received a great deal of media attention in Australia. She was finally refloated on 2nd July 2007.

Last updated: 3rd July 2007
First published: 3rd July 2007
By Brett M. Christensen
About Hoax-Slayer

Spruceglen, Federal Fraser, Selkirk Settler storm pictures
Coastal Watch: The Pasha Bulker
Pasha Bulker free at last

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Brett Christensen,