History, Art & Culture Documentaries:

The Wahine Disaster

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The Wahine Disaster

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4.6 out of 5 stars Based on 7 Customer Ratings

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"The events surrounding the sinking of the Wahine in April 1968."
4 stars"
Purchased on Mighty Ape

Although I was only 3 at the time, I learnt a fair bit about the disaster from my Dad and the Newspapers he kept from the days following. It has filled a number of gaps I didn't know I had about the event. The graphics are good. And someone has done a really good job of preserving the film footage of the day. A must have if you are into Maritime History of New Zealand.

"New Zealand history"
5 stars"
Purchased on Mighty Ape

I lived though this.

"NZ's worst storm sinks the Wahine"
5 stars"
Purchased on Mighty Ape

I was 5 years old and I remember seeing the wreak of the Wahine a few days after the disaster. This documentary unfolds the tragic event from the perspective of the crew and survivors.


The inter-island ferry Wahine sank in Wellington Harbour on April 10, 1968 after it was overcome by the worst storm recorded in New Zealand. Fifty-one people lost their lives.

Stunning new animation brings to life the last moments - with wind gusts reaching an amazing 276 kilometres an hour, the realistic animation shows how a giant wave picked up the 9,000 tonne Wahine and flung her sideways. In zero visibility the ship's master tried to manoeuvre his vessel back out of the harbour but instead, he struck Barrett Reef. The Wahine then drifted helplessly before rolling over and sinking just hundreds of metres from land. The 735 passengers and crew had to jump for their lives. Many were swept across the harbour to a remote and rocky shoreline. Rescue attempts were difficult and dangerous.

This TVNZ documentary provides a new look at the disaster by concentrating on some of the survivors and their day of horror, together with animation which illustrates, for the first time, how the Wahine succumbed in a terrible storm, to become one of New Zealand's worst sea tragedies.
Release date Australia
June 11th, 2008
Movie Format
  • DVD
DVD Region
  • Region 4
  • Standard Edition
Aspect Ratio
  • 1.33 : 1
Country of Production
  • New Zealand
  • Documentary
Box Dimensions (mm)
All-time sales rank
Top 5000
Product ID

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