El Thorvaldo Moderator

Hikitia by @Thorvald (El Thorvaldo)

Steam crane ship Hikitia, Wellington harbour, New Zealand. Originally commissioned in 1926 at Greenock, Scotland, it sailed under its own power, crane-up, to Wellington, and has remained in active service ever since. The ship has been refitted several times, and in 2009 left Wellington for the first time to undergo refurbishment at Lyttelton.

Hikitia prevented a potential catastrophe during the Second World War when the US Liberty Ship John Davenport caught fire, endangering 3000 tonnes of munitions—an almost identical setup to the 1917 Halifax Explosion. Opting not to scuttle the ship, John Davenport was towed to Aotea Quay where Hikitia began removing the cargo, eventually allowing the crew to find and extinguish the fire's source.

Original photo taken May 2014. Submitted to DeviantArt September 2015.

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