Norwegian frigate sinks after rammed by tanker

Wednesday, November 14, 2018

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COPENHAGEN, Denmark (AP) — One of Norway's Navy frigates has almost completely gone under water after an oil tanker rammed into it last week and tore a large hole in its side, authorities said yesterday

Rear Admiral Nils Andreas Stensoenes, the head of Norway's Navy, said several of the wires used to stabilise the KNM Helge Instad snapped Tuesday, causing the vessel to sink further.

Only the top of the frigate with its radar and antenna remained above the waterline.

The 134-metre frigate began listing heavily after a Maltese-flagged oil tanker collided with it last Thursday in a harbour in Sture, north of Bergen. Its 137 crew were evacuated but eight people onboard were injured.

The tanker was only slightly damaged in the collision.

Stensoenes said plans remained to recover the vessel but didn't give details. Authorities are investigating the cause of the accident

“It is too early to say what kind of damages there are,” Commander Haavard Mathisen said.

Built in Spain in 2009, the frigate was part of a NATO fleet in the Atlantic and had recently taken part in the vast Trident Juncture NATO military drill in Norway.

The area surrounding the almost sunken frigate has been declared a military area.

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