Kaiwo Maru (1989)

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Kaiwo Maru II in yokohama japan.jpg
NameKaiwo Maru
OwnerJapanese Government
OperatorNational Institute for Sea Training (Under MLIT)
Port of registry Japan
BuilderSumitomo Heavy Industries
Laid down8 July 1988
Launched7 March 1989
Completed12 September 1989
General characteristics
Class and typeTraining sailing vessel
Tonnage2,556 GT
  • 110.09 m (361.2 ft) overall
  • 89.00 m (291.99 ft) between perpendiculars
Beam13.80 m (45.3 ft)
Height43.50 m (142.7 ft)
Draught6.9 m (23 ft)
Depth10.70 m (35.1 ft)
Propulsion2 x diesel engines, sails
Sail plan
  • Barque
  • Sail area: 2,760 square metres (29,700 sq ft)
Speed13 knots (24 km/h)
Range9,800 nautical miles (18,100 km)

Kaiwo Maru (海王丸, Kaiō-Maru) is a Japanese four-masted training barque tall ship. She was built in 1989 to replace a 1930 ship of the same name.[3] She is 110.09 m (361.2 ft) overall, with a beam of 13.80 m (45.3 ft) and a depth of 10.70 m (35.1 ft). She is assessed as 2,556 GT. Propulsion is by two 4-cylinder diesel engines and a total of 2,760 m2 (29,700 sq ft) of sails. The engines have a total power of 3,000 horsepower (2,200 kW) and can propel the ship at a maximum of 14.1 kn (26.1 km/h; 16.2 mph), with a normal service maximum of 13 kn (24 km/h; 15 mph). Kaiwo Maru has a range of 9,800 nmi (18,100 km; 11,300 mi). The four masts are the fore mast, main mast, mizzen mast and jigger mast. The main mast is 43.50 m (142.7 ft). Her complement is 199.[4]


Her keel was laid by Sumitomo Heavy Industries on July 8, 1988 at the Uraga shipyard, near Yokohama, Japan. She was launched on March 7, 1989. Kaiwo Maru was commissioned on September 12, 1989.[3] She is a four masted barque, over 110 meters in length, with a complement of 199.[5] She is a sister ship of Nippon Maru.

On 20 Oct. 2004, Kaiwo Maru was nearly lost in Typhoon Tokage, while sheltering outside the port of Fushiki in the Bay of Toyama, Japan. She dragged her anchor and grounded on a breakwater, receiving severe damage.[6][7] Her crew of 167, mostly young cadets, was evacuated.[8] Helicopters responded, but were unable to drop lines. So rescuers fixed ropes to the breakwater and crewmembers climbed along them. Thirty were injured, including some with broken bones.[9] Her captain later accepted responsibility. A month later she was lifted by a floating crane and returned to Uraga shipyard. The ship sailed again in January 2006 after major repairs.[10]

Kaiwo Maru is a regular participant in international tall ship gatherings such as Operation Sail and is a multiple winner of the Boston Teapot Trophy.[11] In 2010, Kaiwo Maru visited San Francisco, California to commemorate the 1860 voyage of the Kanrin Maru, the first Japanese ship to officially visit the United States.[12] About 90 percent of the journey was made under sail, and they brought one passenger, a retired businessman who is descended from one of the original Kanrin Maru crew members.

In March 2011, Kaiwo Maru was on a voyage from Japan to Honolulu, Hawaii when an earthquake and tsunami struck Japan. She was subsequently diverted to Ōkuma, Fukushima where she served as accommodation for workers tackling the nuclear crisis at the Fukushima I Nuclear Power Plant.[13]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b "Kaiwo Maru Vessel Details and Current Position". Marine Traffic. 2012. Retrieved 7 May 2012.
  2. ^ a b "Advanced Masterdata for the Vessel Kaiwo Maru". VesselTracker. 2012. Retrieved 7 May 2012.
  3. ^ a b "Outline of Kaiwo Maru," National Institute for Sea Training. Archived January 28, 2010, at the Wayback Machine
  4. ^ "Kaiwo Maru, Richmond". Greater Vancouver Parks. Retrieved 28 March 2011.
  5. ^ "Specification of Kaiwo Maru," National Institute for Sea Training. Archived January 28, 2010, at the Wayback Machine
  6. ^ "On Dragging Anchor and Grounding of the Training Ship KAIWO MARU". Archived from the original on 2012-12-18. Retrieved 2012-08-22.
  7. ^ "The Asahi Shimbun | Breaking News, Japan News and Analysis".
  8. ^ "Daring Red Cross rescue as typhoon battered Japan - IFRC".
  9. ^ http://www.mlit.go.jp/jtsb/kai/maiadigest/digest-1.pdf[bare URL PDF]
  10. ^ "Historical Record | National Institute for Sea Training (NIST)". Archived from the original on 2013-02-18. Retrieved 2012-08-22.
  11. ^ "Boston Teapot Trophy," National Institute for Sea Training. Archived January 27, 2010, at the Wayback Machine
  12. ^ Carl Nolte (May 8, 2010). "Japanese ship docks in wake of momentous voyage". The San Francisco Chronicle. Retrieved 2 May 2012.
  13. ^ Gilligan, Andrew; Mendick, Robert (27 March 2011). "Japan tsunami: Fukushima Fifty, the first interview". The Telegraph. Retrieved 7 May 2011.

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