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Encyclopedia > Battle of Seal Cove
Battle of Seal Cove
Part of Falklands War

Sketch depicting the chase of the Argentinian coastal vessel Monsunen by British Frigates.
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1
The coastal ship ARA Monsunen, after sailing out from Fox bay, is tracked by the British frigates HMS Brilliant and HMS Yarmouth under orders of capturing her.
2
The British force pin up the supply vessel off Lively island
3
The Brilliant Sea Lynx helicopter, with SBS troops onboard, is forced to withdraw under heavy machine gun fire.
4
The Monsunen radar detects the two frigates about 8 miles behind her and approaching at high speed. The warships start to shell the small vessel, which evades the British salvos by running aground on Seal Cove, blinding the British radar
5
After further shelling, the British gave up their chase, making back to San Carlos. The Monsunen is rescued by another coastal ship, the Forrest, and taken in tow to Darwin.
6
After uploading Monsunens cargo, the Forrest managed to reach Port Stanley on May 25.
Date 23 May 1982
Location Off Lively island, Falklands Islands
Result Argentinian tactical success
Supply ship was able
to complete her mission
Combatants
United Kingdom Argentina
Commanders
Captain Anthony Morton (HMS Yarmouth)
Captain John Coward (HMS Brilliant)
Captain Jorge A. Gopcevich-Canevari
(ARA Monsunen)
Strength
1 Type 22 frigate Frigate
1 Rothesay class Frigate
1 Armed coastal ship
Casualties
None Coastal ship beached
(later taken in tow and rescued by ARA Forrest)
1 WIA
Falklands War
Argentine InvasionPebble IslandSeal CoveGoose GreenTop Malo HouseMount HarrietTwo SistersMount LongdonWireless RidgeMount Tumbledown

The Battle of Seal Cove was a minor naval engagement west of Lively Island, during the 1982 Falklands war. On May 22, 1982, while supporting Operation Sutton off San Carlos Bay, the British frigates HMS Brilliant and HMS Yarmouth received orders to stop and seize the Argentinian coastal supply boat ARA Monsunen, actually a small British vessel captured in the course of the Argentinian invasion. The ship was known to be sailing from Fox Bay towards Port Stanley with a cargo of 150 fuel drums and 250 flour sacks . Combatants United Kingdom Argentina Commanders Sir John Fieldhouse Sir John Woodward Margaret Thatcher Leopoldo Galtieri Mario Menéndez Ernesto Crespo Casualties 258 killed[1] 777 wounded 59 taken prisoner 649 killed 1,068 wounded 11,313 taken prisoner The Falklands War (Spanish: ) was fought in 1982 between Argentina and the... Image File history File links No higher resolution available. ... HMS Brilliant (F90) was a Type 22 frigate of the Royal Navy. ... HMS Yarmouth (F101) was this first Modified Type 12 (Rothesay) class frigate to enter service with the Royal Navy. ... The AgustaWestland Lynx is a helicopter designed by AgustaWestland (formerly Westland Aircraft) and jointly produced with Aérospatiale, first flying on 21 March 1971 as the Westland WG.13. ... May 23 is the 143rd day of the year (144th in leap years) in the Gregorian calendar. ... 1982 (MCMLXXXII) was a common year starting on Friday of the Gregorian calendar. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_the_United_Kingdom. ... Image File history File links Flag_of_Argentina. ... The Type 22 Broadsword class frigates are a class of warships built for the Royal Navy. ... Wikipedia does not yet have an article with this exact name. ... WIA is a three letter abbreviation meaning Wounded in action. ... Combatants United Kingdom Argentina Commanders Sir John Fieldhouse Sir John Woodward Margaret Thatcher Leopoldo Galtieri Mario Menéndez Ernesto Crespo Casualties 258 killed[1] 777 wounded 59 taken prisoner 649 killed 1,068 wounded 11,313 taken prisoner The Falklands War (Spanish: ) was fought in 1982 between Argentina and the... Combatants United Kingdom Argentina Commanders Governor Rex Hunt Major Mike Norman RM Major Ian Nott RM Major Phil Sommers FIDF Admiral Carlos Busser Lieutenant commander Guillermo Sánchez-Sabarots Lieutenant commander Pedro Giachino† Strength 46 marines 11 RN sailors 25 FIDFs troops 600 troops (some 60 actually clashed with... The Raid on Pebble Island took place on 14-15 May 1982[citation needed] during the Falklands War. ... Combatants United Kingdom Argentina Commanders Lt. ... Combatants United Kingdom Argentina Commanders Captain Rod Boswell 2nd Lieutenant Luis Albert Brown Strength 19 troops 16 troops Casualties 3 wounded 5 killed 6 wounded 5 captured The Battle of Top Malo House was fought on the 31st May 1982 during the Falklands War, between Argentinian Special Forces from 602... Combatants United Kingdom Argentina Commanders Lt. ... Combatants United Kingdom Argentina Commanders Lt. ... Combatants United Kingdom Argentina Commanders Lt. ... Combatants United Kingdom Argentina Commanders Lt. ... Combatants United Kingdom Argentina Commanders Lt Col. ... Lively Island is one of the Falkland Islands, lying west of West Falkland. ... Combatants United Kingdom Argentina Commanders Sir John Fieldhouse Sir John Woodward Margaret Thatcher Leopoldo Galtieri Mario Menéndez Ernesto Crespo Casualties 258 killed[1] 777 wounded 59 taken prisoner 649 killed 1,068 wounded 11,313 taken prisoner The Falklands War (Spanish: ) was fought in 1982 between Argentina and the... During the 1982 Falklands War. ... San Carlos is a settlement in northwestern East Falkland, lying south of Port San Carlos on San Carlos Water. ... HMS Brilliant (F90) was a Type 22 frigate of the Royal Navy. ... HMS Yarmouth (F101) was this first Modified Type 12 (Rothesay) class frigate to enter service with the Royal Navy. ... Combatants United Kingdom Argentina Commanders Governor Rex Hunt Major Mike Norman RM Major Ian Nott RM Major Phil Sommers FIDF Admiral Carlos Busser Lieutenant commander Guillermo Sánchez-Sabarots Lieutenant commander Pedro Giachino† Strength 46 marines 11 RN sailors 25 FIDFs troops 600 troops (some 60 actually clashed with... Fox Bay is the second largest settlement on West Falkland in the Falkland Islands. ... From the air Port Stanley, also known as Stanley (briefly renamed Puerto Argentino during the Argentine occupation in the Falklands War), is the capital and only town in the Falkland Islands, located on the isle of East Falkland. ...

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On the very first hours of the 23rd, a Sea Lynx identified the Monsunen heading north, west of Lively Island. Another helicopter laden with a SBS team tried to intercept her after a surrender order was submit to the Monsunen by radio. The aircraft was greeted with heavy machine gun and small arms fire, so it was forced to abort the mission.[1] At the same time, the coastal ship’s radar detected the British warships about 8 miles to stern and aggressively approaching. The AgustaWestland Lynx is a helicopter designed by AgustaWestland (formerly Westland Aircraft) and jointly produced with Aérospatiale, first flying on 21 March 1971 as the Westland WG.13. ... The Special Boat Service (SBS) is the British Royal Navys special forces unit. ...


Almost immediately, the Yarmouth began to fire her 114 mm deck gun on the Argentinian vessel, forcing her to maneuver in order to avoid the incoming salvos. When distance fell to 4 miles, Captain Gopcevich, the Argentinian commander, decided that the only way to deceive the British radar was to beach the boat on Seal Cove, a large inlet nearby.


Shortly after he succeeded in running aground his ship and ordering the crew to abandon her, the British shelling resumed, though mostly inaccurate and aimed to the general area of landing. In the process of vacating the vessel, one of the ratings fell overboard and suffered some serious bruises, but was successfully rescued by a young sailor.[2] The crew members took refuge in an improvised inland shelter.


Aftermath

After effectively losing the track of their small foe, the British frigates gave up the chase and returned to San Carlos waters.[3] Meanwhile, the Monsunen with her engine still running, was found by her complement at dawn, apparently after regaining flotability by herself. However, a sling became entangled with her propeller, disabling the ship. No other combat damage was reported.


Gopcevich was able to radio Stanley for help, so a few hours later, another British trawler captured by the Argentinians, the ARA Forrest, towed the Monsunen to Port Darwin, where she was later recovered by British forces on May 29, after the Battle of Goose Green. Darwin is a settlement on East Falkland, lying on Choisel Sound, on the east side of the islands central isthmus. ... Combatants United Kingdom Argentina Commanders Lt. ...


The so-needed cargo was uploaded to the Forrest, which made for Stanley; successfully achieving the Monsunen's relief mission on May 25. The incident is thought to be the only naval engagement between armed ships in the war.


Notes

  1. ^ The improvised ship’s gunners were an army seargent and a conscript who served the 12.7 mm machine gun that shot at the Lynx. The Argentine crew claim that the helicopter's fuselage was hit by their tracer bullets.(Webpage with some photos of the ship and her crew)
  2. ^ This serviceman was honored with the highest Congress condecoration after the war. Sadly, he committed suicide in January 2006.(www.clarin.com/26 January 2006)
  3. ^ In the case of the Brilliant, she was later ordered to rejoin the main Task Force group, east of the Falklands, to refueling.

.50 BMG rounds and 20MM Vulcan round, with a golf ball and a stick of RAM posed to provide scale. ...

References

  • Contraalmirante Horacio A. Mayorga: No Vencidos. Ed. Planeta, Buenos Aires, 1998, pp. 378-380. ISBN 950-742-976-X (Spanish).

 
 

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