A storm in 1953 halted the construction of the slipway at Gort Na gCapall on the Aran Islands and also sank the Princess Victoria in the Irish Sea when “the stern gates to the car deck were forced open in heavy seas”, with the loss of 132 people (The Irish Times, 5 June 2003, and BBC News, 1 January 1953).

Williams and Hall (2004) document eyewitness accounts from Gort Na gCapall. The storm caused the total destruction of the construction machinery and a large number of megaclasts (up to 2 m in length and 15 m above sea level) were transported so that there was no longer access to the slipway for boat launching. Waves reached breaking heights of approximately 12 to 15 m.