HMS Hood was the pride of the Royal Navy, and was a massively armed battlecruiser with what was thought to be armour equal to her armaments. To all intents, HMS Hood was considered to be one of the most powerful battlecruisers afloat in World War Two.
HMS Hood was 44,600 tons, had a crew of 1,419 and was faster than the Bismarck with a maximum speed of 32 knots. The Hood had been launched in 1918 and was armed with 8 x 15 inch guns, 12 x 5.5 inch guns, 8 x 4 inch AA guns, 24 x 2 pound guns and 4 x 21 inch torpedoes. However, the Hood suffered from one major flaw – she did not have the same amount of armour as the Bismarck. The fact that the Hood was faster than the Bismarck by 3 knots was as a result of her lack of sufficient armour for a naval battle fought in World War Two. What had been considered sufficient armour in 1918 when Hood was built, was to prove a fatal flaw. On May 24th, 1941 one of the shells from the Bismarck penetrated the Hood’s deck and exploded in one of her magazines. A massive explosion tore the ‘Hood’ in half. The ship sank extremely quickly – within two minutes – and 1,416 men out of a total crew of 1,419 died.
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