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BudW
16 Feb 09,, 02:49
http://www.thesun.co.uk/sol/homepage/news/article2240543.ece

ArmchairGeneral
16 Feb 09,, 04:02
Just heard about that. Insane. I mean, what are the odds? And not just two subs, two boomers.

TopHatter
16 Feb 09,, 04:21
Yeah, that can't good :(


British and French nuclear submarines loaded with missiles collide underwater

By Ryan Kisiel, Tamara Cohen and Peter Allen

British and French submarines armed with ballistic missiles threatened a nuclear disaster after colliding in the Atlantic, it emerged last night.

The crash is believed to have occurred after state-of-the-art technology fitted in both vessels, which is designed to detect other submarines, apparently failed completely.

Each boat is a key part of their respective countries' nuclear deterrent, ready to unleash hugely destructive weapons at a moment’s notice.

While both countries claim that security was not comprised during the collision, wide-scale enquiries are currently underway on both sides of the Channel.

HMS Vanguard, the lead boat of her class in the Royal Navy, had to be towed back to her base in Scotland after the underwater mishap

French Navy sources confirm that Le Triomphant, one of four strategic nuclear submarines of the ‘Force de Frappe’ (Strike Force), was returning from a 70-day tour of duty when it collided with HMS Vanguard.

During heavy seas in the middle of the night between February 3 and 4, French sailors heard a loud ‘bang’ that all but destroyed the submarine's sonar dome.

This part of the boat should have detected the Vanguard in the first place, but Le Triomphant’s crew of 101 neither saw or heard anything before the collision.

Between them the submarines had 250 sailors on board.

A senior Navy source told The Sun: 'The potential consequences are unthinkable. It's very unlikely there would have been a nuclear explosion. But a radioactive leak was a possibility. Worse, we could have lost the crew and warheads. That would have been a national disaster.'

As inquiries began, naval sources said it was a million to one unlucky chance both subs were in the same patch of sea.

A Ministry of Defence spokesman said: 'It is our policy not to comment on submarine operational matters, but we can confirm that the UK’s deterrent capability has remained unaffected at all times and there has been no compromise to nuclear safety.'
Le Triomphant

French sources confirmed Le Triomphant, pictured, was involved in a collision with Vanguard

The French last night also tried to play down the collision, with a Navy spokesman saying: ‘The collision did not result in injuries among the crew and did not jeopardise nuclear security at any moment.’

Le Triomphant took at least three days to limp back to her home port, although she did not have to be towed.

HMS Vanguard, by contrast, apparently had to be towed back to her home base in Faslane, Scotland.

With a complement of 135, she is the lead boat of the Vanguard class of submarines which carry Trident ballistic missiles around the world.

Le Triomphant is also the lead ship in her own class of French nuclear submarines.

Both vessels boast 16 M45 ballistic missiles, weighing 35 tons each, which carry six warheads with a range of around 5000 miles.

France’s Atlantic coast is notorious for being a ‘submarine graveyard’ because of the number of underwater craft, mainly German U-Boats, sunk in the area during the Second World War. The story of one was immortalised in the classic 1981 film Das Boot.

Two sailors died from a blast on a British nuclear submarine in March 2007. An oxygen generator blew up as HMS Tireless cruised beneath the Arctic ice. The tiny compartment the men were in quickly filled with smoke, but rescuers could not open doors buckled by the explosion.

Operator Mechanic Anthony Huntrod, 20, from Sunderland, and Leading Mechanic Operator Paul McCann, 32, from Halesowen, West Midlands, were dead by the time their shipmates reached them.

The deaths led to Armed Forces Minister Bob Ainsworth issuing an 'unreserved' apology in the House of Commons, after it emerged that the oxygen machine which exploded had been contaminated with oil.

A Board of Inquiry heavily criticised the Navy and the Ministry of Defence blamed 'systematic failings' for the tragedy. Link (http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/worldnews/article-1146124/British-French-submarines-packed-nuclear-missiles-crash-underwater.html)

gunnut
16 Feb 09,, 06:33
Are the sailors OK?

Kommunist
16 Feb 09,, 08:34
Imagine the odds of this happening!!:eek:

BTW, how could the sonars of BOTH the submarines fail to detect each other?

jlvfr
16 Feb 09,, 10:47
Could they have been training vs each other? That would explain why the sonars would be off...

nebula82
16 Feb 09,, 12:35
Imagine the odds of this happening!!:eek:

Yes not that many nuclear-armed submarines out there (relatively speaking), so what a friggin coincidence!

You'd figure something like this would be more likely to happen during the Cold War, when there were more frequent patrols going on.

Nebula82.

Super Dude
16 Feb 09,, 15:28
Wow I wonder what will happen and who will be taking the blame. Thank god it ended that way.

jlvfr
16 Feb 09,, 15:37
The BBC reports that the collision occurred "in heavy seas". Depending on the depth at the time, this might have played hell with the sonars...

snowhole
16 Feb 09,, 15:57
There's been accidents recently... U.S.-Russian Satellites... And USS Lassen collided with a civilian boat in Japan... And now this...

kuku
16 Feb 09,, 16:31
Is it that these boats are so quiet, nothing can pick them up.

Do these submarines carry out their missions with escorts or do they go around alone?

Thankfully no loss of life or injury to anyone..

Are collisions with other objects common with submarine (as such news items keep on appearing every now and then).

This must have been super expensive, given the high technical nature of submarines.

Roycerson
16 Feb 09,, 18:12
Imagine the odds of this happening!!:eek:
BTW, how could the sonars of BOTH the submarines fail to detect each other?
They couldn't. If either had been using active sonar.


Could they have been training vs each other?
Maybe, seems likely. If the crews were actively doing things like laundry and scrubbing decks and such they should have heard each other. That they were both uber quiet at the same time in the same place makes me think it was probably war games. Or the biggest coincidence ever to take place in the Ocean. Occam's Razor say's war games.


Is it that these boats are so quiet, nothing can pick them up.
Exactly, unless they use active sonar, then everyone knows exactly where they. Some comments on this thread seem to indicate people think nuclear subs go around pinging all day long. Nothing could be farther from the truth. Nuclear subs job is not to find things, it is to not be found. Active sonar is a perfect way to be found.



Do these submarines carry out their missions with escorts or do they go around alone?
Escorts would give away their location.

treasure44
16 Feb 09,, 18:20
this is a joke. even if they weren't active you'd get plant noises at that close range from passive sonar.

oh well at least there were no casualties:)

Kernow
16 Feb 09,, 19:33
They could have both had their 'Invisible Cloaks' on. Anti-Sonar.

Kommunist
16 Feb 09,, 19:41
Well, Tankie thinks that the French are to blame!!
Ah, the British and the French.....:biggrin:

http://www.worldaffairsboard.com/showthread.php?t=49731

eclectic-cynic
16 Feb 09,, 19:46
Just suppose it had been a collision with a Russian sub....

Silent Hunter
16 Feb 09,, 19:58
Could they have been training vs each other? That would explain why the sonars would be off...

No, they were on deterrent patrols (Le Trimophant on the way home) it seems. You don't do that on a deterrent patrol.

maximusslade
16 Feb 09,, 20:10
this is a joke. even if they weren't active you'd get plant noises at that close range from passive sonar.

oh well at least there were no casualties:)

You MIGHT get plant noises. I served on a submarine that was quieter at flank speek than a 688 was tied to the pier. Again, these being boomers their plants are designed to make next to no noise at all. Also they might employ some sort of harmonic distortion device that could further reduce vibrations which cause noise. Fact of the matter is that boomers when they want to be quiet are giant holes in the water. In fact the best way to find them is to look for where there is no noise LOL.

Given what I know about submarines, I am willing to bet that one of them was trying to shadow the other and there was a miscalculation in range and/or speed, which is relatively easy to do when all you are working off of is sound.

jlvfr
16 Feb 09,, 21:27
I served on a submarine that was quieter at flank speek than a 688 was tied to the pier.

I smell a Seawolf or a Ohio ;)


PS: flank speek ? the skipper spoke very fast? ;) sorry couldn't resist...

Kommunist
16 Feb 09,, 21:33
I smell a Seawolf or a Ohio ;)


PS: flank speek ? the skipper spoke very fast? ;) sorry couldn't resist...

Seawolf AFAIK.....:)

Kernow
16 Feb 09,, 22:10
HMS Vanguard made it back to Faslane under her own steam and was then taken by tug to its moorings, dents and scratches were visible on the side of the submarine. Also the French Sub had it's Sonar Dome damaged.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk/7892294.stm

dundonrl
17 Feb 09,, 01:01
this is a joke. even if they weren't active you'd get plant noises at that close range from passive sonar.

oh well at least there were no casualties:)

it's reported that US Ohio class boomers.. you listen for the silence of them.. since they are quieter than the surrounding water etc....

dundonrl
17 Feb 09,, 01:03
You MIGHT get plant noises. I served on a submarine that was quieter at flank speek than a 688 was tied to the pier. .

Seawolf, Conneticut or Carter?

ArmchairGeneral
17 Feb 09,, 01:20
Given what I know about submarines, I am willing to bet that one of them was trying to shadow the other and there was a miscalculation in range and/or speed, which is relatively easy to do when all you are working off of is sound.

Why the heck would a boomer try to shadow another sub?

Gun Grape
17 Feb 09,, 01:31
Guess this shoots the "Big ocean, Little Boat" theory all to hell.

BenRoethig
17 Feb 09,, 03:48
Imagine the odds of this happening!!:eek:

BTW, how could the sonars of BOTH the submarines fail to detect each other?

Well, the the British sub was on the wrong side of the sea lane and the French expected the Brits to move out of the way for them.

Kernow
17 Feb 09,, 04:00
Well, the the British sub was on the wrong side of the sea lane and the French expected the Brits to move out of the way for them.

Very good; driving on the wrong side. :))

maximusslade
17 Feb 09,, 04:45
Why the heck would a boomer try to shadow another sub?

Who knows? He could have been a former attack boat skipper who felt like givng the other side a little hell. I've heard of former fighter pilots doing "stunts" while flying airliners, namely the pilot who did a barrel roll in a DC-10. Fact of the matter is, that no details have been released yet, so it is all speculation. Given that the French boat has a caved in sonodome, and the British boat has dents and scrapes really doesnt make anything more clear to me.

And for those of you who were wondering, USS Connecticut, electrician.

Kommunist
17 Feb 09,, 07:00
Well, the the British sub was on the wrong side of the sea lane and the French expected the Brits to move out of the way for them.

Which side of the road do you drive in France?
In India, we have right side steering wheel, and drive on the left side of the road. I think it is the same in GB. If it was an American boomer, it would make sense as you have left side steering and right side driving there. So they (US and British) would be in the same lane in different directions;)

Or maybe the French boomer was trying to overtake a Russian boomer without having the proper clearance space ahead of it in the opposite lane.:)):biggrin:

chakos
17 Feb 09,, 08:31
French drivers...

kato
17 Feb 09,, 09:18
Which side of the road do you drive in France?

There are only four countries in Europe to drive on the wrong side of the street - all of them former British Empire, i.e. the UK, Ireland, Malta and Cyprus.

gabriel
17 Feb 09,, 09:24
Who knows? Given that the French boat has a caved in sonodome, and the British boat has dents
.
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sorry guys...:)

Dreadnought
17 Feb 09,, 17:48
Somebody was caught tailing somebody else.:));)

highsea
17 Feb 09,, 18:15
From the descriptions it sounds like the French boat t-boned the brits.

Silent Hunter
17 Feb 09,, 18:51
Why the heck would a boomer try to shadow another sub?

It wouldn't...

BenRoethig
18 Feb 09,, 00:43
Which side of the road do you drive in France?
In India, we have right side steering wheel, and drive on the left side of the road. I think it is the same in GB. If it was an American boomer, it would make sense as you have left side steering and right side driving there. So they (US and British) would be in the same lane in different directions;)

Or maybe the French boomer was trying to overtake a Russian boomer without having the proper clearance space ahead of it in the opposite lane.:)):biggrin:

France (and the rest of continental Europe) is lefthand drive with the vehicle in the right lane like the U.S. and Canada.

Gokul
18 Feb 09,, 17:39
There are only four countries in Europe to drive on the wrong side of the street - all of them former British Empire, i.e. the UK, Ireland, Malta and Cyprus.

Wrong side ??? Excuse me, but I believe we're the ones who drive on the CORRECT side and the other chaps drive on the wrong side...

So, continental Europe is wrong, the British and Indians are right.... hehehehe.... :)):)):)):)):)):))

Dreadnought
18 Feb 09,, 17:59
Drive down the middle then you cannot be accused of right or wrong since you cover both.:)):P

gunnut
18 Feb 09,, 18:46
French skipper on the cell phone or something?

Knaur Amarsh
18 Feb 09,, 19:05
Wrong side ??? Excuse me, but I believe we're the ones who drive on the CORRECT side and the other chaps drive on the wrong side...

So, continental Europe is wrong, the British and Indians are right.... hehehehe....

Wrong, in India u drive on whichever side of the road there are less potholes.


Drive down the middle then you cannot be accused of right or wrong since you cover both.:)):P

Thats what we do out here, easier to dodge cows that way :P

Bloody messy at the railway intersections though, the barrier lifts when the train is gone and bam, there are cars lined up in both lanes on both sides :mad:

jlvfr
18 Feb 09,, 20:26
Don't the japanese also drive on the wrong... sorry, on the other side of the road?

highsea
18 Feb 09,, 21:14
French skipper on the cell phone or something?He was trying to surrender but got too close. :biggrin:

Kernow
18 Feb 09,, 21:21
There are only four countries in Europe to drive on the wrong side of the street - all of them former British Empire, i.e. the UK, Ireland, Malta and Cyprus.


And your point being? This is covered on another thread. I also think you will find that the Law of the Sea is International!!!!!! :rolleyes:

Dreadnought
18 Feb 09,, 21:56
Yep, In naval slang its called the "Rules of the Road".

Kernow
18 Feb 09,, 21:57
Yep, In naval slang its called the "Rules of the Road".

Thanks for that, you learn something new every day.

kato
18 Feb 09,, 22:41
The international nautical "rules of the road" are port-to-port passing, port-side overtaking and yield-to-starboard.
Hence they are the nautical equivalent of the "continental" way of doing things, not the "imperial" way.

Tin Man
05 Mar 09,, 21:44
I`m with Max, lets take a closer look at this.....two naval powers operating SSBN`s for decades in close proximity, two subs in the same patrol box at the same time at exactly the same depth......oh dear, crew must have been asleep in the watch room then!

These behemoths only crawl around at a few knots BTW when on patrol.

dave lukins
05 Mar 09,, 22:05
He was trying to surrender but got too close. :biggrin:

Ouch!!:))

Master Chief
05 Mar 09,, 23:34
Yes not that many nuclear-armed submarines out there (relatively speaking), so what a friggin coincidence!

You'd figure something like this would be more likely to happen during the Cold War, when there were more frequent patrols going on.

Nebula82.


You don't think the US or Uk track each other SSBN'S ? Well they do, We do. Its common practace, but noy common knowledge.;)

jlvfr
06 Mar 09,, 10:29
The reason for the crash has been found:

http://www.pbase.com/image/109893010

Tin Man
06 Mar 09,, 16:34
The reason for the crash has been found:

http://www.pbase.com/image/109893010

Did the French boat T-bone Vanguard or did Van` cut le Boat up hehe.