Jutland 1916, 18:55 Scheer’s Second Turn


Map Code: Ax00986

At 18:55 Scheer gave the order to conduct another 180-degree turn to set his fleet on a course due east. The reasoning behind the move is unclear but Scheer later wrote that he planned to confuse the enemy. In addition to this, nightfall was approaching so the German ships would be illuminated against the setting sun in the west. The British fleet was faster so the Germans could not hope to outrun them in a straight pursuit. Contact was established again at 19:00 and as Scheer got closer to Jellicoe the front ships in the German line came under intense fire. By 19:17, Scheer ordered a 180-degree turn for the third time and fled west whilst torpedo boats launched numerous torpedoes towards the British. At this point, Jellicoe made the cautious decision to turn most of his ships away from the incoming torpedoes, something for which he would later be heavily criticized.

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