Out of the Fog, The Sinking of the Andrea Doria


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by Algot Mattson. English translation; edited by Gordon W. Paulsen and Bruce G. Paulsen.

Fascination with a ship’s sinking does not fade — a trace of the unsolved mystery seems to follow all such disasters through history. On the evening of July 25, 1956, the Italian passenger liner Andrea Doria was inbound to New York approaching Nantucket lightship. Outbound from New York was the Swedish-American liner Stockholm. Between approximately 11:09 and 11:13 PM, the two ships collided causing heavy damage to both. Eleven hours later, Andrea Doria sank.

“Out of the Fog” describes the events leading up to the collision from the perspectives of both ships. The collision itself is covered as is the heroic and largely successful rescue effort that followed — although fifty-six people were lost, hundreds were saved. The preliminary hearing held after the tragedy raised as many questions as it answered; the two companies chose to settle out of court before all testimony had been given. This book contains more insights and information not previously available in English.

When the officers of each vessel became aware of the presence of each other, they come to opposite conclusions to the developing situation? Did both ships err in their calculations? Was fog a contributing factor? What happened to the logbook of the Andrea Doria? Did she lack proper stability, either as a result of design or construction, improper ballasting or both? Did the officers on watch appraise the radar information they received correctly? Who was at fault? Did the settlement of the case reflect the view of the parties as to which was responsible for the catastrophe and rescue efforts? All these questions and more are addressed in the book. A welcome addition to the text are comments from the editors Gordon W. Paulsen and Bruce G. Paulsen, who give a legal analysis of the collision including the applicable law, their view as to the comparable faults of each ship and whether or not the vessels would have been able to limit liability under U.S. law. Gordon W. Paulsen was one of the lawyers representing Swedish American Line, but he has attempted to be even-handed.

Hardback 165 pages. Illustrated. 8.5 X 11.5 in; 22 X 25.5 cm.

Weight 1 oz