SS Heraklion

The Heraklion ( Crete after the port city of Heraklion) was a ship of Typaldos ( Aegean Steam Shipping Tipaldos Bros, Greek: Ατμοπλοΐα Αιγαίου Αδελφών Σ Τυπάλδου. ). It sank on December 8, 1966 southeast of the island Falkonera on the journey from Crete to Piraeus.


The ship was built in 1949 on the Clyde Fairfield Shipbuilders and used by the British shipping company Bibby under the name Leicestershire as a combined cargo and passenger ship in the East Asia service to Ceylon and Burma. In 1964 it was purchased by the Greek shipping company Typaldos and converted to a car ferry. This was the name of Heraklion on the Chania ( Crete) - Piraeus used was 152 m long, 18 m wide had 8,922 GRT and drove 14.5 knots. In the winter months the capacity of the ship was 35 trucks with an average weight of 10 t. The last revision of the ship from sinking took place on 29 June 1966.

The Downfall

The Heraklion sank on the way from the island of Crete to Piraeus in the amount of Milos island on December 8, 1966. On the last trip broke up in heavy seas an insufficiently secured refrigerated trucks. He was thrown through the loading doors located amidships on the lateral side wall, which were thus pushed violently, causing large amounts of water quickly penetrated into the car deck. The Heraklion got through this fast heavy whipping side and capsized because the scuppers were too small and the penetrated water could not flow out again. 241 people lost their lives in the accident; only 47 were still in time to leave the ship before sinking and be saved.


  • A large part of the drowned staff came from Lixouri, the hometown of the shipping family on the island of Kefalonia, many families had to mourn victims and denied most of the adoption of the low compensation. The old-established family Typalpos that comes from the Neapolitan nobility Tirpado, suffered damage to their image, which concerned innocent bystanders.
  • In Crete, the ANEK Lines was founded because we saw the cause of the accident in the nichtkretischen owner. Only Cretans were allowed to acquire shares of the shipping company.
  • Charalamos Typaldos, the owner of the shipping company and Panajiotis Kokkinos, the managing director have been sentenced and had until 1968 to serve a prison sentence. In a meantime arranged review of the remaining ships did not meet the Greek security provisions 12 of 15. Then the shipping company Typaldos went bankrupt.