Maiale( Pig). The first human torpedo (the Italian Maiale) was electrically propelled, with two crewmen in diving suits riding astride. They steered the torpedo at slow speed to the enemy ship. The detachable warhead was then used as a limpet mine. They then rode the torpedo away. The idea was successfully applied by the Italian navy (Regia Marina) early in World War II and then copied by the British when they discovered the Italian operations.