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Japanese destroyer Harusame (1935)
Harusame underway on November 30, 1943.
Career Japanese Navy Ensign
Name: Harusame
Ordered: 1931 FY
Builder: Maizuru Naval Arsenal
Laid down: 3 February 1935
Launched: 21 September 1935
Commissioned: 26 August 1937
Struck: 10 August 1944
Fate: Sunk 8 June 1944
General characteristics
Class & type: Shiratsuyu-class destroyer
Displacement: 1,685 long tons (1,712 t)
Length: 103.5 m (340 ft) pp
107.5 m (352 ft 8 in) waterline
Beam: 9.9 m (32 ft 6 in)
Draft: 3.5 m (11 ft 6 in)
Propulsion: 2 shaft Kampon geared turbines
3 boilers, 42,000 hp (31,000 kW)
Speed: 34 knots (39 mph; 63 km/h)
Range: 4,000 nmi (7,400 km) @ 18 kn (33 km/h)
Complement: 226
Armament: • 5 × 12.7 cm/50 Type 3 naval guns (2×2, 1×1)
• 2 × Type 93 13 mm AA guns
• 8 × 24 in (610 mm) torpedo tubes
• 16 × Depth charges
Service record
Operations: Battle of Tarakan (1942)
Battle of the Java Sea (1942)
Battle of Midway (1942)
Battle of the Eastern Solomons (1942)
Battle of the Santa Cruz Islands (1942)
First Naval Battle of Guadalcanal (1942)

Harusame torpedoed by the US submarine Wahoo near Wewak, New Guinea, on 24 January 1943.

Harusame (春雨?, Spring Rain)[1] was the fifth of ten Shiratsuyu-class destroyers, and was built for the Imperial Japanese Navy under the "Circle One" Program (Maru Ichi Keikaku).[2] This vessel should not be confused with the earlier Russo-Japanese War-period Harusame-class torpedo boat destroyer with the same name.


The Shiratsuyu-class destroyers were modified versions of the Hatsuharu-class, and were designed to accompany the Japanese main striking force and to conduct both day and night torpedo attacks against the United States Navy as it advanced across the Pacific Ocean, according to Japanese naval strategic projections.[3] Despite being one of the most powerful classes of destroyers in the world at the time of their completion, none survived the Pacific War.[4] Harusame, built at the Maizuru Naval Arsenal was laid down on February 3, 1935, launched on September 21, 1935 and commissioned on August 26, 1937.[5]

Operational history

At the time of the attack on Pearl Harbor, Harusame was assigned to Destroyer Division 2 of Destroyer Squadron 4 of the IJN 2nd Fleet, and had sortied from Mako Guard District as part of the Philippine invasion force, covering landings at Vigan and Lingayen Gulf. From January 1942, Harusame participated in operations in the "Operation J". the invasion of the Netherlands East Indies, including the invasions of Tarakan Island, Balikpapan and eastern Java. During the Battle of the Java Sea, Harusame engaged a group of Allied destroyers. In March and April, Harusame was based at Subic Bay, from which she assisted in the invasion of Cebu and the blockade of Manila Bay in the Philippines. In May, she returned to Yokosuka Naval Arsenal for repairs.

During the Battle of Midway on 4–6 June, Harusame was part of the aborted Midway Occupation Force under Admiral Nobutake Kondō. The late July, she transferred to Mergui via Singapore to join the Indian Ocean raiding force, but the operation was cancelled due to developments at Guadalcanal, and she returned to Truk on 21 August.

During the Battle of the Eastern Solomons on 24 August, she was part of the escort for the battleship Mutsu, and during most of September, she was an escort for the seaplane carrier Kunikawa Maru, exploring the Solomon Islands and Santa Cruz Islands for potential base locations.

In October through mid-November, Harusame participated in nine "Tokyo Express" high speed transport runs or surface attack missions to Guadalcanal or Lae, as well as participating briefly in the Battle of Santa Cruz on 26 October under Admiral Takeo Kurita. During the First Naval Battle of Guadalcanal on the night of 12–13 November 1942, Harusame claimed heavy damage to an Allied cruiser by her gunfire. She returned to Yokosuka for repairs in early December.

In January 1943, Harusame returned to Truk escorting the troopship Asama Maru, and continued on to Wewak to resume transport operations to Kavieng. On 24 January, she was torpedoed by the submarine USS Wahoo (SS-238), and had to be beached to avoid sinking. She was recovered by salvage teams, returning to Truk for emergency repairs by the end of February, and returning on to Yokosuka by the end of May. At Yokosuka Naval Arsenal, one gun turret was removed and replaced by two additional triple Type 96 25 mm AT/AA Guns. She was reactivated at the end of November, and returned to Truk on 11 January 1944.

Through the middle of February, Harusame escorted tanker convoys from Tarakan and Balikpapan to Truk, suffering from minor damage in an air raid by United States Navy aircraft at Truk which killed two crewmen. She was reassigned to Palau on 19 February, and patrolled from Palau until the end of March. In April and May, she performed escort duties between Davao and Lingga and Tawitawi. On 8 June, while on an assignment to evacuate troops from Biak, she was attacked, and sunk, by USAAF B-25 bombers approximately 30 miles (48 km) northwest of Manokwari, New Guinea at position 00°05′S 132°45′E / 0.083°S 132.75°E / -0.083; 132.75Coordinates: 00°05′S 132°45′E / 0.083°S 132.75°E / -0.083; 132.75. Of her crew, 74 were killed, including squadron commander Captain Masashichi Shirahama. She was removed from the navy list on 10 August 1944.


  • D'Albas, Andrieu (1965). Death of a Navy: Japanese Naval Action in World War II. Devin-Adair Pub. ISBN 0-8159-5302-X. 
  • Brown, David (1990). Warship Losses of World War Two. Naval Institute Press. ISBN 1-55750-914-X. 
  • Howarth, Stephen (1983). The Fighting Ships of the Rising Sun: The Drama of the Imperial Japanese Navy, 1895–1945. Atheneum. ISBN 0-689-11402-8. 
  • Jentsura, Hansgeorg (1976). Warships of the Imperial Japanese Navy, 1869–1945. US Naval Institute Press. ISBN 0-87021-893-X. 
  • Lengerer, Hans (2007). The Japanese Destroyers of the Hatsuharu Class. Warship 2007. London: Conway. pp. 91–110. ISBN 1-84486-041-8. 
  • Nelson, Andrew N. (1967). Japanese–English Character Dictionary. Tuttle. ISBN 0-8048-0408-7. 
  • Watts, Anthony J (1967). Japanese Warships of World War II. Doubleday. ASIN B000KEV3J8. 
  • Whitley, M J (2000). Destroyers of World War Two: An International Encyclopedia. London: Arms and Armour Press. ISBN 1-85409-521-8. 

External links


  1. Nelson. Japanese-English Character Dictionary. Page 480
  2. Lengerer, pp. 92–93
  3. Peattie & Evans, Kaigun .
  4., IJN Shiratsuyu class destroyers
  5. Nishidah, Hiroshi (2002). "Shiratsuyu class 1st class destroyers". Materials of the Imperial Japanese Navy. 

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