HMAS Tobruk

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HMAS Tobruk
HMAS Tobruk.jpg
Navy photo
Name HMAS Tobruk
Owner Royal Australian Navy
Builder Cockatoo Docks & Engineering CO Pty Ltd, Sydney
Launched 20 Dec 1947
Completed 7 May 1950
In service 8 May 1950
Out of service 29 Oct 1960
Fate Sold for scrap
General characteristics
Type Battle Class Destroyer
Tonnage 2,436 tons
Length 379 feet (115.52m)
Beam 41 feet (12.50m)
Depth 12 feet 9 inches (3.89m)
Propulsion Turbines, 50,000 HP
Speed 31 knots
Capacity crew 290


HMAS Tobruk spent the first 15 months exercising in Australian waters before proceeding to Japan to join the UN's Naval fleet engaged in the Korean War. Her active duty commenced on 3 Oct 1951 as a screen ship for the US carrier USS Rendova, a task she was to undertake on many occasions. In between she undertook bombarding duties, including the total destruction of a freight train. She anchored on 15 December, the first time she was still for 106 days, during which she steamed 30,000 miles. She recommenced her bombardment role two days later and continued until her return to Australian waters on 22 Feb 1952.

Following six months in home waters she escorted HMAS Sydney to Manus island and then carried out security patrols around the Monte Bello Islands during the British Atom bomb explosion. This was followed by another 7 months in home waters. She returned to Korean waters on 26 Jun 1953, and on 27 June joined the screen for the British aircraft carrier HMS Ocean. Soon after she resumed her bombardment role, with hostilities ceasing on 27 Jul 1953. HMAS Tobruk remained in Korean waters until January 1954 before heading home for a refit.

The 1950s saw her return to South East Asians waters on several stints with SEATO and Far East Strategic Reserve exercises including one when a star shell penetrated into 'A' gun bay badly wounding two seaman, one of whom later died from his injuries. After a 1960 refit she was exercising with the fleet of the east coast when she was accidentally hit by a shell from HMAS Anzac. Following basic repairs she was paid off into the Reserve Fleet on 29 Oct 1960, and sold for scrap on 15 Feb 1972 to a Japanese salvage company.

Battle Honours

  • Korea 1950-53
  • Malaya 1955-60

Crew members