CANADIAN SUBMARINE ISSUES DISTRESS CALL ON DELIVERY VOYAGE
05 Oct 04. The BBC reported that a major rescue effort has been launched off Ireland after a Canadian submarine asked for assistance.
The Canadian Defence Force said HMCS Chicoutimi had suffered a mechanical failure and its crew were all safe. HMCS Chicoutimi, the fourth and final submarine, was handed over to the Canadian DND on 2nd October 2004 at Her Majesty’s Naval Base in Faslane, Scotland, UK.
A Royal Air Force Nimrod has been diverted to the area and a search and rescue helicopter from the Royal Navy base in Ayrshire is on its way.
The submarine, which was bought from Britain, is not nuclear-powered or carrying nuclear warheads.
The request for assistance came from the vessel some 100 miles north west of Ireland.
Neil Smith, a spokesman for the Faslane submarine base on the Clyde, said that Royal Fleet Auxiliary vessel Wave Knight had been turned round and was on its way to the scene.
A Type 23 frigate, HMS Montrose, is being sent from Faslane, accompanied by tug boat support.
“At this moment in time we don’t have the exact details,” said Mr Smith.
“We are in communication with the people on board.
“We are doing everything we can to assist them, and at this moment in time my colleagues are working hard to make sure that happens as quickly as possible.”
Earlier today, BAE SYSTEMS issued a release stating that, The Canadian Department of National Defence (DND) had awarded BAE Systems a one-year CDN $10.9m (£4.5m) contract extension to support the Victoria Class submarines by providing in-country engineering and supply management.
The support is managed by a team of 55 Canadian nationals based at Ottawa in Ontario, Halifax in Nova Scotia and Victoria in British Columbia who are employed by BAE Systems’ Canadian subsidiary of its Customer Solutions and Support business. By teaming with other companies in the Canadian naval industry, BAE Systems has been supporting the three Victoria Class submarines delivered to the Canadian DND under the terms of a government-to-government contract.
The team will also support HMCS Chicoutimi, the fourth and final submarine, which was handed over to the Canadian DND on 2nd October 2004 at Her Majesty’s Naval Base in Faslane, Scotland, UK.
As part of its contractual obligations, BAE Systems has already achieved and exceeded its initial ‘offset’ obligation, or Industrial Regional Benefits (IRBs) and is maintaining significant and expanding ongoing business relationships with Canadian industry. Examples of this work include: producing platform and signature management systems and simulators for naval ships and submarines designed by BAE Systems; supplying aluminium castings and casings for BAE Systems’ land based products and producing machine tools, investment castings and integrated circuits for BAE Systems’ military aircraft and avionics businesses.
Dougie Sharp, General Manager of BAE Systems Projects (Canada) Ltd. said, “This contract extension will strengthen our links with the Canadian DND and industry to the benefit of all parties. Our aspiration is for a long-term relationship on submarine support within Canada. Together we can give the Canadian Navy high levels of submarine capability, availability and reliability at the lowest possible cost for the taxpayer. Our aim is to leverage the global strength of BAE Systems to maximise investment into Canada by way of IRBs, continuing to create and maintain jobs within the Canadian industrial market place.”
All the submarines have been upgraded from Upholder to Victoria Class under contract from the UK’s MoD by BAE Systems at its Barrow-in-Furness facility. In addition to the upgrade work, the company has successfully supplied integrated logistics and spares, plus operator and maintainer training though its joint venture company – Flagship Training Ltd.
Comment: At the moment there is no news as to the exact problems w