Preliminary investigations into the two recent fires on board Canadian warships and the loss of power on a third vessel on Monday have not revealed any conclusive evidence to link the incidents, the Royal Canadian Navy said Wednesday.
Fires recently broke out on two frigates within days of each other. Both fires started in the starboard gas turbine enclosure in the forward engine room of the Halifax-class frigates. In another incident a Maritime Coastal Defence Vessel lost power while on operations two days ago.
“The investigations into these technical issues will include examining pre-deployment checks and maintenance routines,” Rear-Admiral Craig Baines, commander of maritime component command said in a statement. “Although a challenge, the technical issues have had a minimal impact on operations.”
One fire was on HMCS Toronto, the other on HMCS Halifax. There were no injuries and both fires on those two frigates were quickly extinguished.
The fire on HMCS Halifax broke out on Oct. 26 in the starboard gas turbine enclosure in the forward engine room. The frigate was off the coast of Norway taking part in a NATO exercise. Initial indications are that the fire onboard the warship was a result of a clogged drain in the engine enclosure, navy officials said Wednesday.
On Oct. 29 HMCS Toronto experienced a total loss of power while conducting operations and anti-ship missile defence training in the Hebrides Sea off the coast of the United Kingdom. The ship was able to restore power and safely sail to Belfast.
But upon arrival in Belfast on Oct. 30 a fire started in the starboard gas turbine enclosure in the forward engine room, the same location as the fire onboard HMCS Halifax. At this point, initial indications are that the cause of the fire was due to an overflow from an excess fuel collection tank, according the Royal Canadian Navy. The ship is returning to Halifax as planned and while the engine is functional, it is being kept in reserve while the investigation concludes, the navy noted.
On Nov. 5, HMCS Edmonton was conducting routine operations at sea in the eastern Pacific Ocean when it experienced a short loss of electrical power. The crew immediately responded to the situation and were able to bring power back. But when power was restored it was discovered that the electronic control of the propulsion system had not come back on line. Eventually it was determined that two blown fuses were the cause of the propulsion failure.
Navy officials say the issue with HMCS Edmonton is not related to the other incidents as it is a different class of ship and has different types of equipment onboard.
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