Built during 1900, the passenger liner Proteus sank as the result of a collision with the SS Cushing, 20 miles south of Hatteras Inlet, North Carolina, during August, 1918. Only one crew member drowned. All others, including 82 crew and 12 passengers, survived.
Discovered in 1983, the Proteus has yielded some of the best artifacts found off the North Carolina coast, including beautiful stained-glass 150 LB square bronze windows that display wonderfully after restoration. Today, the Proteus sits on a hard sand bottom in 120 FT of water. Underwater visibility can range from 50 to more than 100 FT with an average of 70 FT. Summertime bottom temperatures run between 65 and 80 degrees, depending on Gulf Stream conditions.
Sitting upright from the sand, much of the 390 FT long wreck has deteriorated to skeletal remains but is still substantial. Machinery litters the keel section and three huge boilers dominate the middle section of the wreck. The stern towers 30 FT or more above the sand with a huge propellor dwarfing divers. It's one of the most photographed wrecks in the United States. The Proteus is a Sand Tiger Shark habitat and it's not unusual to see and interact with more than 50 sharks on a single dive.
Wreck Diving Adventures uses this wreck for Advanced EANx certification dives. The Proteus is easy to navigate, offering spectacular visibility with great marine life. Bottom gas of 28% EANx with 50% for deco yields 25 to 30 minutes of BT with 15 minutes of deco. Our Dive Operator in Cape Hatteras is Captain JT Barker aboard the Under Pressure.