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The Sunk Submarine Is not to Be Lifted



More than two years ago Museum of the World Ocean initiated the work on archives that could assist in finding the Soviet S-4 submarine sunk near Taran Cape in 1945.  Research officers from the museum and P.Shirshov Institute of Oceanology (AtlantNIRO) together have managed to identify approximate coordinates of the wreck. The joint work of the Baltic Fleet and North-West branch of GOSAKVASPAS for Kaliningrad oblast has resulted in localization of the submarine. At the present moment the specialists are 90% sure that it is the S-4 submarine. The submarine is at 70-meter depth; it is the only sunk war ship of WWII that is located in the Baltic Sea waters of Kaliningrad region.

January 1, 1945 was the last day the S-4 made a contact. That very day the commander reported on torpedoing and sinking an enemy ship during patrol.  There are data that on January 7 and 18 indistinct radio signals presumably by the S-4 were received by the Irtysh mothership in Helsinki. After it the connection with the submarine was lost. The reason of the loss of the submarine and 48 crew members is to be investigated. However, there are some presumable versions. In accordance to the one of them  the S-4 was attacked by a German torpedo boat with a D-bomb on January 4, 1945, to the other – on January 6, 1945 the boat was rammed by the T-33 torpedo boat from the second group of ships covering the Wehrmacht seaboard defence flank.

Nevertheless, full and detailed identification of the S-4 submarine is the priority task.

Svetlana Sivkova, Director General of the museum, noted that it is not planned to lift the submarine. In accordance with the tradition wrecks and their crew are considered a common grave. The museum is going to study the wrecks, install a memorable plate aboard the submarine and look for crew members’ relatives in the nearest future. Family and friends will be invited to Kaliningrad and visit the heroic place if their fathers and grandfathers.


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