|ID No. 7718034.|
|Gross Registered Tonnage||21,122 tons.|
|Builder||Ishikawajima-Harima, Aioi. Yard No 2667.|
|Length||Overall 186.0 m. LPP 177.4 m.|
|Propulsion mode||Single screw.|
|Generator voltage||440 v ac.|
|Generator Frequency||60 Hz,|
|Delivered to owner||Sept 1978.|
|Scrapped||Sept 18th 2010.|
Refer to "Arafura I" for details of service etc.
Sept. 1978. Delivered to owner CNCo. as "Asian Pearl".
1991. Renamed "Carmen".
1992. Renamed "California Express".
1993. Renamed "Prestige".
1998. Renamed "MSC China".
2000 Renamed "Carmen".
2001. Renamed "MSC Sicily".
Sept 18th, 2010. Broken up at Alang.
Events / Stories
The ASIAN PEARL, name shortened telegraphically to "APE", was a great favourite of CNCo sea and shore staff; not only was she on a comfy run, but if the truth be told she was built to a higher "spec." than normal for CNCo at that period (this changed with the CHEKIANG III and sisters). The APE and her sister the JADE were employed in Asia Australia Express, and were owned partly by OCL, partly by Nedlloyd and very slightly (13%) by CNCo, but the APE was managed by CNCo whilst the JADE was managed by Mercury Ship Management, a Nedlloyd subsidiary, which presented an opportunity for ferocious rivalry in ship management, and the PEARL was in consequence kept in a yacht like state, and indeed was generally the Commodore's Yacht.
On one occasion the PEARL was "turned over" by a rummage squad on her arrival at her first Australian port; she was rummaged again at the next port and Commodore Kidd was unamused, feeling sure that his crew would never run pidgin cargo. Jimmy Lough, on the other hand, said, "The Aussies are onto something, and they are probably right - the Number One Fireman owns a bar in Keelung!"
Sure enough during her last port call that voyage a fisherman fishing off the wharf was started to be approached by three figures who asked "Which way Chinatown". Unfortunately for the "cargo" he was an off duty policeman. They had been hidden in the rather posh underdeck rope bins with which a thoughtful IHI had equipped the ship.