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Ethel excites in Dhilba Guuranda-Innes National Park

News release
15 August 2014

Recent weeks of high winds and tidal movements has exposed a century-old shipwreck off the south-west coast of Yorke Peninsula.

Originally named Carmelo, the Ethel was built in England in 1876 and came to it’s fate as it sailed past Althorpe Island in 1904 on route to Port Adelaide from South Africa.

Under force of strong southwest winds, the ship drifted into the beach which now bears its name.

Mark Davison, Ranger in Charge for Dhilba Guuranda-Innes National Parksaid that the wreck is a real icon for Dhilba Guuranda-Innes National Parkand its sighting is a rare and exciting occurrence.

"It struck reef as it rounded the Yorke Peninsula damaging its rudder, leaving the vessel unsteerable. The crew became stranded and one drowned whilst attempting to swim ashore."

"The S.S. Ferret notified a nearby lighthouse keeper of the stranding, salvage attempts were made but due to the location of the beach and its steep cliff surrounding the Ethel has remained relatively intact for many years.

"The iron frame of the ship collapsed in 1985 and much of the remains are now immersed beneath pounding ocean waves."

Wild weather in recent weeks has exposed the Ethel for the third time in as many years which is extremely rare.

Visitors to Dhilba Guuranda-Innes National Parkcan take a fully furbished board walk to the beach and capture this sight on photo and film. Further information about the wreck and all camping and heritage accommodation bookings at Dhilba Guuranda-Innes National Parkare available at www.parks.sa.gov.au.

Shipwrecks in South Australia are protected under the Historic Shipwrecks Act (1976) and visitors are prohibited from interfering with remains.

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More information

Communications and Engagement Coordinator

0884413446

louise.mcintosh@sa.gov.au