||Onderweg van Timaru (Nieuw Zeeland) naar Apia Brak/Nukualofa (Tonga) met een lading bevroren vlees in dozen brand in het achterschip op ca. 12 mijl van Banks Peninsula. Een bemanningslid kwam hierbij om het leven. 3 opvarenden kwamen na acht uur roeien in een dinghy aan land te Bucksfoot Bay en sloegen via een plaatselijke boer alarm bij de autoriteiten. Daarna werden de overige opvarenden gered. Het wrak werd naar Lyttleton gesleept maar begon weer te branden. Op 12 juni total loss verklaard en op 17 juni 1978 als doelwit door de Marine tot zinken gebracht in pos. 43.15.Z. - 173.46.O.
The loss of the Tongan vessel KEMPHAAN. At Approx 03.00 hours (Local Time) on Sunday 11th June 1978, whilst on passage from Timaru (New Zealand) to Nukuálofa (Tonga), fire broke out aboard the Tongan vessel KEMPHAAN. At the time she was some 20 km North West of Banks Peninsule and was carrying a cargo consisting mainly of frozen meat in cartons. Owing to the atensity on the fire, which quickly swept the accommodation and subsequently spead to her number 2 Hatch, the vessel was abandoned within minutes of the outbreak and before any message could be sent out. One seaman was burned to death and his body was later retrieved from the vessel. Three seamen doent some eight hours in a dinghy rowing towards land, before they landed at Dicksfoot Bay, adjacent to Le Bons Bay, on Banks Peninsula and alerted a local famer to the situation. Immediately the Police alerted Air Sea Rescue. The Sunner Lifeboat service, the Lyttelton Harbour Board and allied services. An iroqis Helicopter on the RNZAF immediately took off from Wigram Airbase, near Christchurchand at around 13.00 hours sighted the rest of the survivors who vere winched aboard the helicopter and subsequently landed at Chrischurch. One seaman was suffering from severe burns from which he later died on the 15th. Meantime, the Lyttelton Harbour Board Tug “Canterbury“ left Lyttelton at 14.00 hours, closely followed by the pilot Cutter “Wairangi“. The “Canterbury“ closed contacy with the burning vessel in late afternoon and a fire squad managed to control the blaze sufficiently to allow “Canterbury“ to take her in tow. Taken initially to a position off Port Levy Bay, at the entrance to Lyttelton Harbour, where it was initially intended to moor her, a further outbreak of fire at about 190.00 hours and subsequent pumping of water aboard the vessel in an effort to quell the fire caused her to start listing badly and place her in danger of capsizing. She wasthen towed up Lyttelton Harbour by the tug “Canterbury“ and at the entrance to Purau Bay (Almost opposite the Port of Lyttelton taken in tow by the cutter “Wairangi“ and towed into shallow water in Wreck Bay, still burning fiercely, particularly in her no 2 hold. The following morning after an all night battle with the fire, it was finally extinguished and at 10.00 hours she was abandoned to the Receiver of Wrecks, with the Lyttelton Harbour Board acting as agents for the Ministry of Transport. During the course of the next few days the vessel was inspected by all interested parties, plans to endeavour to discharge the meat in her No 1 hold being entertained but in any event it was announced on Thursday 15th June that she would be towed to sea and used for target practice by the RNZAF, subject to last minute tenders and/or proposais for disposal being entertained by the Receiver. Pumping out of the vessel commenced the following morning, Friday 16th June in preparation for her tow to sea but it was not until shortly before high tide at 00.45 hours that the cutter “Wairangi“ the following morning, was able to tow the vessel out of Wrecks Bay to the waiting “Canterbury“, where the tow was connected and commenced at about 01.45 hours. A moderate swell and a break in the tow line having slowed down the progress of tug and tow, last minute tenders for the purchase of the hulk having been rejected by the Receiver, eight Skyhawk aircraft of the No 75 Squadron at Ohakea commenced their strike and at approx. 14.30 hours Saturday 17th Juni 1978 the KEMPHAAN having been hit by both Rocket and Bomb fire, rolled over and sank by the stern in position 43.15.S 173.46. E in some 570 fathoms of water.