The Navio do Breu Wreck

On the brazilian coast, several shipwrecks are utilized as fishing points by local fishermen. The existance of this shipwrecks are konwn only when wreck divers locate them and spread the news.

In the first weekend of December 2000 we receive an invitation of our friend Padinho, a long time diver from São Paulo. Them a group of divers from Minas Gerais went to the city of Paraty to dive in the wreck of the steamship “Paulista” and search for another shipwreck widely known by local fishermen but the brazilians scuba divers didn´t know about it.

On Saturday, 1st of december, we leave the city at 06:00 am bound for Cairuçu island.

After some effort to find the wreckage using informations given by the fishermen and having found nothing, we decided to go to a nearby inlet ,where dozens of people live to get more informations or try to bring with us somebody who knows the right spot where the ship lies. We had luck !  A fisherman named Ronaldo decide dto help us.

Following Ronaldo´s indication and with a little bit of luck, I have reached the wreckage after ten minutes of search in a depht of eleven meters.

We begin the dive from the stern, wich still are in good conditions. There we saw the rudder and the propeller. Going forward to the bow, we passed by the shaft the engine and the big boiler. A lot of frames could be seen.In the bow, the most significant remain of the cargo are barrels of breu (breu is like a grease). Due to this this ship is know as the Navio do Breu (Ship of Grease).

Back to the stern by the sand, we found a big winch capsized, a condenser, a second winch, a capstan and remains of the ship´s hull. In all over the ship there is a huge quantidity of bottles that seems to be some kind of medicine. Despite her localization, very far from the dive points of the city of Paraty, the Navio do Breu is in shallow waters, with dephts from 11 to 14 meters, parallel to the rocks and all this factors made this an easy dive.

Unfortunately, it is not of my knowledge the identity of this vessel but we are doing some research.

Many thanks to the dive team: Carlos Bersan, Padinho, Sérgio Amorim, Tadeu, Romeu Dib, Átila and the fisherman Ronaldo.

Rodrigo Coluccini
Criador e proprietário da Revista Deco Stop, foi um dos responsáveis pela divulgação em larga escala das informações sobre naufrágios no litoral brasileiro, fato antes restrito a poucos. É co-autor do manual de naufrágios da certificadora PDIC. Seu trabalho é citado em vários livros atuais sobre história maritima brasileira confirmando a importância de seu trabalho.