Russian Nuclear Sub Trapped On Bottom

Monday, August 14, 2000
More than 100 Russian sailors are reportedly trapped in their nuclear-powered submarine on the sea bed off northern Russia, after technical faults apparently forced them to shut down the nuclear reactor, the navy said. Reuters reported that Russia's independent NTV television station said the cause of the accident was flooding of the torpedo tubes and front section of the submarine Kursk, and said a power shutdown might lead to problems with oxygen supplies. The navy could not be contacted to confirm the details of the accident. The head of the navy's press office, Igor Dygalo, said earlier that unspecified technical faults had forced the Kursk to settle on the sea bed after training exercises in the Barents Sea, most of which lies in the Arctic circle north of European Russia. He gave no details of the depth or location of the Kursk, classed as Antyei in Russia and Oscar-2 by NATO, but said no nuclear weapons were on board. He said the submarine's nuclear reactor had been shut down and there were no radiation leaks, and that rescue vessels had rushed to the scene. A reporter for NTV speaking from the Northern Fleet's base of Severomorsk said the crew of the Kursk had had to ground the vessel on the sea bed after its torpedo tubes and front section flooded. The reporter gave no source for his information. He also said a power shutdown on the vessel might lead to problems with supplies of oxygen on board. The Norwegian environmental group Bellona said on its web site (www.bellona.no) that rescue efforts could be hampered by the power shutdown. It quoted former Russian naval officer Alexander Nikitin, who works for Bellona and was recently cleared by a Russian court of spying, as saying that if the submarine was at a depth of more than 100 m it would be difficult to use the Kursk's ballast tanks to refloat it. Nikitin was quoted as saying that Oscar-2 class submarines did not have rescue capsules to take the crew to the surface and that deep-diving rescue submarines would have to be used. Interfax news agency said the Kursk came into service in 1995 and had 107 people on board, including 52 officers. Itar-Tass said its class of submarine could carry up to 130 men. The defense ministry of Norway, which has territorial waters in the Barents, said it had no information about the incident. One of the most serious recent submarine disasters was off Norway's north coast in 1989, when a Soviet Mike class nuclear submarine, the Komsomolets, sank after fires on board. A total of 42 crew died in the accident. Norway says the sunken submarine's nuclear reactor and torpedoes are still slowly leaking plutonium into the water. The latest edition of the Military Balance, a guide to the world's armed forces by the International Institute for Strategic Studies, said Oscar class submarines can carry 24 Shipwreck underwater-to-surface guided missiles and heavy water torpedoes. The missiles can be loaded with conventional or nuclear warheads, the book said.

Maritime Today


The Maritime Industry's original and most viewed E-News Service

Maritime Reporter May 2016 Digital Edition
FREE Maritime Reporter Subscription
Latest Maritime News    rss feeds

Contracts

Olympic Pact with Canyon Offshore

Norwegian offshore shipping company Olympic Shipping has entered into a frame agreement with Canyon Offshore for the joint marketing and subsequent operation of

HII Secures Aircraft Carrier Planning Contract

Huntington Ingalls Industries (HII) was awarded a $152 million contract for advance planning for the construction of the third aircraft carrier in the Gerald R.

Wood Group Bags Statoil MSA

Wood Group has been awarded an evergreen master services agreement (MSA) by Statoil to support the life cycles of its offshore  and onshore facilities. Work and

Marine Propulsion

ABB Saves 700,000 tons Fuel for Marine Vessels

ABB’s environmental friendly Azipod propulsion system brings greater fuel efficiency to diverse shipping segments ABB today announced the total fuel savings

First Cruise Company Fined under Australia’s New Fuel Rules

Australia’s NSW Environment Protection Authority (EPA) has fined Carnival PLC $15,000 after one of its P&O Cruises ships, the Pacific Jewel, breached new low sulfur fuel regulations in Sydney Harbour.

New Low-emission Hybrid Azistern Tug Design

Offshore Ship Designers (OSD) has designed a powerful, low-emission compact e-tug to further augment its Azistern series of vessels. Among other roles, the vessel

 
 
Maritime Security Maritime Standards Pod Propulsion Port Authority Salvage Ship Electronics Ship Repair Ship Simulators Shipbuilding / Vessel Construction Winch
rss | archive | history | articles | privacy | contributors | top maritime news | about us | copyright | maritime magazines
maritime security news | shipbuilding news | maritime industry | shipping news | maritime reporting | workboats news | ship design | maritime business

Time taken: 0.0350 sec (29 req/sec)