The IJN Akitsushima was a seaplane tender/carrier. The ship displaced 4724 tons, had a lenght of 118 metres and was 15.7 metres wide. The ship was powered by four diesel engines driving twin props, a total of 8000 shp, giving a maximum speed of 19 knots. Akitsushima was armed with 10 25 mm anti-aircraft guns, four five inch (50 cal) guns and carried one large Kanwanishi flying boat. The Okikawa Maru was a Japanese tanker, which had 168 metres long. In length, width, and volume Okikawa Maru is the largest of the Coron wrecks. 

Between The Battle of the Philippine Sea, June 19th and 20th 1944, and The Battle of Leyte Gulf, October 23rd to 26th 1944, the Japanese attempted to reinforce their forces occupying the Philippines. For divers, Coron's history started on 24 September 1944 when a US Navy strike force of fighters and dive bombers attacked a Japanese supply fleet of up to 24 ships, at anchor, in Coron Bay and around Busuanga Island.

Sath Rasheed's last dive trip in the Philippines was capped off with 2 fantastic wreck dives off the coast of Coron. The Japanese ship wrecks were a joy to dive into, albeit he was bit claustrophobic at first cause the dive master was taking me into tiny passageways, but it was an incredible experience, and the awesome people from Sangat Island Dive Resort.


Sath Rasheed (Youtube) |

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