The Flying Frenchman
22 Jul 2015 4 Comments
This was brought to my attention by my fellow ship spotter Mr. Alper Böler. He was looking for the ships taking part in Sea Shield exercise off the coast of Romania he noticed that the French F-70 class destroyer D-643 FS Jean de Vienne was sending her AIS signals from the Black Sea.
This was odd as her passage through the Turkish Straits was totally unobserved which is not impossible but highly improbable.
The ship tracking site Marine Traffic noted her last position to be in the Black Sea 43,24472° N and 30,26093° E.on 21 July 2015. But when looked to her older position recording one day ago she was in Tyrrhenian Sea at 41,41823°N and 9,4666° on 20 July 2015.
The distance between these two coordinates is about 1300 nautical miles depending on the course taken. If she really made that trip in the given time frame she must have sailed at least with a speed of 54 knots. This is almost the double of her indicated top speed of 30 knots.
So here we have either a real flying Frenchman (her high-speed must have made her observance from the shores impossible as she passed through the Turkish Straits) or the AIS transponder is not correctly configured. Her real whereabouts is still a mystery to me.