HMAS SHOALHAVEN was brought to one hours notice for sea following the receipt of a signal from HMS AMETHYST, reporting she had been fired on by Communist shore batteries, and was damaged, suffered heavy casualties, and ran aground in the Yangtse River. Surgeon LEUT N. S. Chalk, RANR, was transferred to HMS BLACK SWAN, which, in company with the cruiser HMS LONDON, were dispatched to assist AMETHYST. HMS CONSORT also sailed from Nanking to assist. SHOALHAVEN was ordered to remain at Shanghai to act as the wireless telegraphy guard ship for the Senior British Naval Officer, (Shanghai). The attempt by CONSORT, BLACK SWAN and LONDON to reach AMETHYST failed, and all ships suffered damage and loss of life before returning to Shanghai. AMETHYST was later re-floated by her crew, and escaped to Shanghai.
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