End of the road for SS France aka SS Norway

Aug 17, 2006
Author: P&S

The long and extended life of that super liner and cruise ship SS France (SS Norway) has come to an inevitable end with the once longest liner in the world being beached at Alang in India, prior to final cutting up and destruction.

Ending her days under the disguise of ‘Blue Lady’ the 76,049-gt ship was hauled onto the beach on 15 August with the aid of two tugs, Seaways 5 and Intersurf, not without a struggle it might be said.

Built at the Chantiers de l’Atlantique shipyard in St Nazaire, France in 1961, SS France was the pride of all France as a trans-Atlantic liner in competition with other famous liners such as the two Queens – Queen Elizabeth and Queen Mary and that speedy American competitor SS United States.

After withdrawal from the trans-Atlantic liner service the ship was sold and converted for cruising as SS Norway in 1979. Then came a disastrous boiler explosion in Miami harbour which rang the final bell in the ship’s extended life. Now on the beach, the ship awaits the cutting torches and steel cables that will reduce her to so many tonnes of scrap, of interest only to the souvenir hunters and those with memories of this once grand old lady of the sea.


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