EMPIRE MICA WRECK

Max Depth: 100 ft. 

 

The Empire Mica is a 465 ft. long British standard type Ocean tanker that was sunk by a German U-Boat in WWII. Two torpedoes from the U-Boat caused a series of explosions and the ship burned for a day as it drifted in the gulf, finally sinking in 105 ft. of water south of Cape San Blas, Florida.

The explosions did a great deal of damage to the Empire Mica. Most of what’s left of it is just a large debris field. Part of the bow section, however, is relatively intact, and rises 50 or 60 feet above the bottom. It’s an authentic relic of WWII, unlike most of Florida’s other wrecks which were purposely sunk for diving.

Since its sinking, the US Navy has used the Mica for torpedo practice, reducing it to a pile of rubble. Since 1942, the Empire Mica has been dived by thousands. The enormous propeller in front of Capt. Anderson’s Restaurant is from the Mica. Today the remains of the Empire Mica lie 64 miles from Panama City and 20 miles south of Cape San Blas. Her bow section is intact, and divers will recognize her two boilers, propeller shaft, and rudder.

The entire wreck is covered with everything from barracuda, grouper, rays, and sharks to amberjacks Overall, the Empire Mica is one of the best wreck dives in the area, and it should not be missed.

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