The accidental sinking of the Yukon

July 14, 2000

The Yukon sank accidentally at 12:25 AM on Friday, July 14, 2000, one day before she was to be purposefully sunk with much fanfare. She had been towed out to her sinking site, but the entry/exit holes which had been cut just above the water line were too close to the water line for the size swell that was coming in that night. The Yukon had one pump on board, and that was simply not enough to keep up with the water she was taking on. At 12:25 AM she sank, landing on her port side and without any of the below-waterline entry/exit holes which would have been blown out as part of the planned sinking. She is therefore a much more challenging wreck dive than planned. Please dive her safely and within the limits of your experience.

Since the sinking was accidental and in the middle of the night, very few images of the sinking exist. To my knowledge, only two videographers got footage of the sinking: Bob Saxman at NBC 7/39 and a freelance videographer named Mark Jeannette. NBC will not share their footage. However, much to my surprise and delight, Mark Jeannette has agreed to share his footage with us, the diving community. I am extremely appreciate of his generosity, all the more so because he works freelance and selling video is the way he makes his money.

These video clips are from

Mark Jeannette
© 2000 Bay News Video

The original video is extremely dark because the Yukon sank at midnight, with no way to light her up as she went down. Therefore these clips are given in two different versions:

  1. The original, dark version (better image quality, but very dark)
  2. A lightened version which is more gray and grainier, but it's easier to see the ship

Darker version (7.8 MB)

Lighter version (9.4 MB)