Collision with submarine blamed on fishing boat captain

02.10.2011 09:24:43 (GMT+12)

The fishing boat Donets collided with the nuclear submarine St. George the Victor through the fishing boat captain's fault, Kamchatka regional transport prosecutor Mikhail Novitsky told Itar-Tass on Friday after an inquiry.

A notification is sent to the owner of the Donets -- the Rybnoye company. It is asked to provide some documents for the investigation. An administrative case will be opened against the captain, the prosecutor said.

The captain is accused of violating the shipping safety regulations. The statement that the Donets crew before the collision did not see the submarine and did not detect it with radars is not true.

According to the prosecutor, the captain and the crew of the Kormchy trawler, which was near the incident site, confirmed the submariners’ statement that the St. George was on the surface with signal lights and did not move. The ship was detected and seen visually at a distance of five miles, the prosecutor cited the Kormchy captain as saying.

The information that the Donets crew was in a drunken state and the vessel attempted to escape from the site is not confirmed, the prosecutor said.

The incident occurred on September 21 at 02:10 Kamchatka time in the Avacha Bay near Cape Mayachny. The fishing boat Donets, manoeuvring to pass by the Kormchy trawler, collided with the nuclear-powered submarine cruiser. None was hurt. According to the military prosecutor's office of the Vilyuchinsk garrison, the combat readiness of the submarine was not affected.

The St. George the Victor is a strategic nuclear-powered submarine of the Calmar project. It was launched on June 20, 1980. On November 3, 1983, the ship joined the 25th division of the second fleet of the Pacific Fleet submarines with the base in the Krasheninnikov Bay (Vilyuchinsk). The displacement is 13,000 tonnes. The maximum speed is 24 knots. The depth is 320 metres. The crew numbers 130 people.