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The 135m long Kyokuzan Maru is another great Imperial Japanese Army Auxiliary Supply Ship sunk in Coron Bay.
|Name Dive Site:||Kyokuzan Maru|
|Inserted/Added by: ||funkydivers|
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The Kyokuzan Maru was anchored near a small uninhabited island called Dimalanta at the north coast of Busuanga with another 2 cargo ships lying abreast. As VB-19 was a couple of minutes behind the other Airgroups, attacks had already begun over Coron Bay when they reached the north-eastern shore of Busuanga at 09:00 hrs. The leader of the entire strike force ordered VB-19 to attack the targets in the northern area. Unfortunately the pilots were not allowed to drop their wing tanks which it was believed considerably affected the accuracy of the bombing. Out of 10 planes attacking the Japanese ships 8 lost one wing tank during the dives.
According to the "After Action Report" of VB-19 one plane scored a direct hit upon her port side and three or more very near misses from other planes were noted. As a result, the ship was set aflame on port side near her living quarters. However, it is obvious that vessel did not sink due to the bombing as hull, cargo holds, as well as engine room are still intact and lifeboat davits have been swung out. It is believed that her crew scuttled and abandoned the ship later on.
Lying upright on the bottom her deck level is at 22-28m. She lies to the Northeast of Busuanga Island. Due to its distance from Coron this wreck is dived by a one hour jeepney ride to the north end of Busuanga and transferring to a rented dive boat. This is done as an all-day trip for two dives on the Kyokuzan Maru.
This is a beautiful wreck dive experience. More or less intact, this huge sunken ship usually offers good visibility of about 20 meters and ideal diving conditions. Japanese staff cars and trucks can be found in the cargo rooms.
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The Kyokuzan Maru is a spare parts supply vessel. Inside her holds one can find many tires and what is left of the staff car. The body of the car has weathered away, but the frame, engine, bumpers, etc are still visible. The Kyokuzan is located on the north side of the island in Maricaban Bay. Getting there involves a 1 hour drive to the north side of Busuanga and a 30 minute boat ride to get to the wreck. Due to the depth, this dive is only recommended for experienced divers. Quite often the visibility here reaches 20 meters.
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