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Hebe Reef facts for kids

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Hebe Reef is a reef located about 5 kilometres northwest of the mouth of the Tamar River. Part of the reef is visible at low tide, however it is completely submerged at middle and high tide.

Hebe Reef’s unsuspecting location in the middle of what one would believe the channel to the river has deceived many, as numerous ships have been wrecked on its rocks.


Hebe Reef was named after the first ship that struck the reef; Hebe. Hebe was “a full-rigged ship of 250 tons built at Chittagong, India in 1804” - Low Head Pilot Station Maritime Museum. The ship departed from Madras, India in late March 1808 and was destined for Sydney; but when the decision was made on 15 June to turn into George Town, Tasmania - then Port Dalrymple - Hebe struck the reef due to a mix of lack of knowledge and bad weather.

All but one person on the ship survived, and most of its fittings and cargo were salvaged and sold in Sydney.

Ever since, the reef has been known as Hebe Reef.


There have been a total of 5 shipwrecks on the Hebe Reef:

Date of Wreck Ship Departed Destined For
15 June 1808 Hebe Madras, India Sydney
24 January 1851 Phillip Oakden London Exeter, Tasmania
8 June 1883 Asterope London Launceston, Tasmania
24 April 1886 Esk Hobart Sydney
10 July 1995 MV Iron Baron (1985) Port Kembla (seaport) Bell Bay, Tasmania
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Hebe Reef Facts for Kids. Kiddle Encyclopedia.