Type: Passenger – cargo ship
Tonnage: 10128 tonnes
Sunk: June 10, 1940
Position: At Wingate reef
Geographic Coordinates: 37 ° 19.49 ‘N, 19 ° 38.20’ E
Distance from the coast: 200 meters from the reef
Minimum depth: Water surface
Maximum depth: 38 meters
Visibility: Pretty good
Current: Low to medium
Difficulty of the dive: Moderate to difficult
Historically: Very interesting
Photographically: Very interesting
Biologically: Very interesting
Dive at the wreck
At Wingate Reef, four brown, curved formations stretch a few feet out of the water. This are the davits on the starboard side of Umbria. The ship lies on its port side in a 70 to 80 degree angle – the bow shows to northwest. When the ship was parking, both anchors were thrown, and the chains are still ending in the deep blue.
In broad terms, the Umbria is structured as follows:
In the direction from bow to stern at first raises the bow with its large anchor winches, followed by the three front holds.
Then the mid ships superstructure and remains of the bridge follow.
Next towards the stern two more cargo holds and finally the quarterdeck follow. In the bow area, a lush grow of multi-colored sponges and various hard corals dominate the view. Nature has almost completely conquered the wreck, which still has an extraordinarily good state of preservation after more than 70 years.
The three front cargo holds, all meanwhile without covers, are characterized by the small size of their openings.
These holds basically contain ammunition of various types. Detonators, large-caliber bullets, rifle ammunition and tail units for bombs, which were later joined together with the detonators and bomb bodies, are piled in thick boxes.
There are also various building materials and vehicles, which never reached their goal. Beside countless ammunition and various wooden boxes store a few large aircraft tires marked “Corde per aero” in the first cargo holds. In the second cargo hold, piled up in a back corner, smaller shells and / or bombs and short stick grenades can be found.
There is not a direct threat from the explosive. They were, as is everywhere understood, transported separated from their detonators.
In the third cargo hold before the bridge cement bags are stacked, which were provided together with wooden boards as later building material. Here one can find also piled boxes, that have slipped through the inclined position of the wreck and also contain different detonators in their original packaging.
From this cargo hold one can enter through a narrow passage into further lower decks on port side. There are three cars of type Fiat 1100 Lunga, covered by light brown sediment, which were specially modified for use in the rough terrain of the Italian colonies.
The collecting passion of many divers has unfortunately left their marks: Several items have already been dismantled.
Also the two rear cargo holds are full of ammunition, detonators and other military equipment. You should move gently, to avoid that any parts of the load start to slip. The consequences could be fatal.
In the upper area on the starboard side there is a small sink made of metal. In general, it is interesting to visit the central cabins, the long corridors and lounges. Lower located one finds amidships on the port side the two bent masts with its derricks and the broken chimney. A rather undamaged life raft is also lying on the ground. At greater depths at the rear, the large, four-leaf starboard propeller and the powerful rudder blade dominate the picture. The port propeller, however, is caved deep into the seabed.