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Prayers for Our Guys On Crippled Submarine


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Breaking news that our "new" submarine, HMCS Chicoutimi, has issued a distress call in the Atlantic. Initial indications are that things are not too severe, rescue ships on their way. But, a few moments to whoever you pay homage to in difficult moments to remember our brave submariners under the sea.


Submarine issues call for help


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.

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."



Fourth, final sub in navy's hands

'Canadianization' of HMCS Chicoutimi delayed

By The Canadian Press

The Canadian navy has taken possession of its fourth and final Victoria-class submarine from the British navy.

However, the process of equipping the boat with Canadian torpedo and fire-control systems will be delayed, as the navy's behind-schedule submarine program struggles to get up to speed.

A renaming ceremony was held Saturday at a base in Faslane, Scotland, as the submarine HMS Upholder became HMCS Chicoutimi, the latest addition to the Canadian fleet.

It's a significant milestone in Canada's problem-plagued submarine program, which is running about three years behind schedule.

"It signifies the complete transfer of the submarine program to Canada," said Rear Admiral Dan McNeil, commander of Maritime Force Atlantic, in a phone interview after the ceremony.

"It ends the first phase, the most important phase, of their acquisition."

The Chicoutimi will sail into Halifax harbour Oct. 18. Shortly thereafter, it will be made available to patrol the East Cast.

So that the boat can be available to patrol, however, officials are putting off its "Canadianization."

The three other diesel-electric-powered submarines are still in various stages of the Canadianization process, which includes refitting their fire-control systems and torpedo systems.

It's a process the other submarines began shortly after they arrived in Canada. The changes are needed so the boats can fire the American-made mark-48 torpedoes, which are deployed using a Canadian system.

"We would like to have an operational submarine continually available in the Atlantic and one in the Pacific," McNeil said.

Another of Chicoutimi's sister boats, HMCS Corner Brook, is currently undergoing work in Halifax. "While we're working on Corner Brook, we will keep Chicoutimi operating," he said.

He would not say how soon the work on the Corner Brook would be completed, adding that it would be based on available resources and other technical factors.

"Quite frankly, that's up in the air."

McNeil said Chicoutimi will be still be able to patrol for illegal fishing activity and do surveillance work, despite having no torpedo capabilities.

"The most fundamental thing she will do is keep training submariners," McNeil said.

Another of the submarines, HMCS Victoria, is currently testing the torpedo system on the West Coast.

A deal to purchase the four diesel-electric submarines to replace Canada's three Oberon class boats was reached in 1998.

The submarines were originally built in the late 1980s and early 1990s for the British navy.

They were mothballed in 1994 when Britain decided to stick with an all-nuclear submarine force.

One of the delays in getting the submarines fully operational for the Canadian navy was taking the time to repair cracks found in key valves after the vessels were brought out of storage.

McNeil also cited the U.S.-led war on terrorism for holding back the program.

He said Canada's contribution - Operation Apollo - diverted many of the navy's engineering resources to the Arabian Sea, hence slowing down the submarine program.

The estimated yearly cost of operating the four submarines has also risen from about $97 million to $121 million.

However McNeil defended the cost, and said the submarines are now a major priority.

"You just cannot beat the value of having a submarine, that belongs to you, operating in your waters."



The Canadian flag flies for the first time from the stern of HMCS Chicoutimi at the sub's naming ceremony held at Clyde's Naval base in Faslane, Scotland on Saturday.


I remember seeing this article and picture on Sunday, and thinking, hmmm, how safe is this.

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If Canada wants to be serious in the world, then it's going to have to spend money on the military.

Although buying a bunch of disel-powered lemons from a country that built the Titanic wasn't a good idea. Some nuclear-powered subs from the Americans would've been better.

Now, about those helicopters we need....

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Wow Dave

You knew something was wrong before the friggin Canadian gov't. I had a bad feeling about those subs when I first read about the purchase. Pretty dangerous work, piloting a crippled submarine. Some say shame on the British Navy for selling us a bunch of decaying lemons.

Was it really a good idea to name a sub after a town that was recently wiped out by a flood?

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quote:Begs the question: Why does Canada have these submarines?? Generally its good to have a purpose for spending hundreds of millions of dollars on something.

There is a lot of territory, most of which is water to patrol. Like LMS said ... I guess you haven't heard the recent squabble with Denmark over an island in the Arctic, or those illegal European & Asian fishing vessels that constantly come into our waters.

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