Category Archives: HMCS Athabaskan

Athabaskan is Home

HMCS Athabaskan arrived this morning. She picked up her pilot at 0500, and was off Pier 42 around 0700. (Above) Passing the ectug wharfs, photo screengrab from
(below) Overall shot with tugs Atlantic Elm, Atlantic Oak and Atlantic Fir.

(Above and Below) Tugs working her of dockyard, around 0830. Looks like she will be tied up at the NC Jetty, with damage side facing the pier.

Update: tied up at Jetty NC:

 (Below)Damage Just above the dock Level

HMCS Athabaskan Due tonight

HMCS Athabaskan is due to arrive around 11pm tonight. Given the cloud cover, and probable fog, She will be well obscured.

UPDATE 2230 01/14. No sign of her yet.
UPDATE 2350 01/14 – Atlantic Fir on AIS. ~16nm from pilot station, making 4.8 knots. that puts her in the inner harbour in about 5 hours.
UPDATE 0000 01/15 – Twitter tells me she is due at the pilot station at 0500

HMCS Athabaskan Off Glace Bay

Thanks to Gus for pointing me to (A great Site if you like Aircrft BTW) which has this shot takken off Table Head near the Marconi Heritage Site.

Quote “It was there that I saw the tow line go slack and watch the Tugs jockey it into a stable position. The icy winds kept the Destroyer bobbing around nicely in the seas due to it being much lighter without its armament and electronics suite onboard. It must have been quite the chore for the Tugs to keep her steady.”

Thanks to Erik Fullerton of Three Miles Final Photography for the use of the images.

Athabaskan Update ready to resume Tow

Photo. Don Merritt used with Permision

 The Calgary Herald is reporting:

 Temporary repairs have been made to the damaged hull of a navy warship in the hopes of resuming its trip to Halifax in the coming days, the military said Monday. Lt.-Cmdr. Bruno Tremblay, a spokesman for the navy in Halifax, said an engineering team completed minor, temporary repairs on the 40-year-old vessel Saturday to ensure its hull is watertight.

 “I am confident that the ship can safely return here to her home port in Halifax,” Tremblay said. “As planned, the tow will likely occur this week.” Tremblay said a plan is now being finalized with a different towing company, Irving-owned Atlantic Towing Ltd., to return HMCS Athabaskan to Halifax for further assessment. He said the navy hopes the towing process, which could take several days, will begin this week if the weather co-operates.

Update: Don Merritt Photos of the Patch Job:

Curious choice of file photo

The Toronto Star (–canadian-naval-destroyer-damaged-under-tow-near-nova-scotia)!ran an article on the Athabaskan tow incident and illustrated it with an interesting photo. The photo in question shows Athabaskan along side a merchant ship. The merchant ship appears to be GTS Katie, and he photo is from the conclusion of operation Megaphone

From Wikipedia:
At the conclusion of Operation Kinetic, the Canadian contribution to a NATO peacekeeping force in Kosovo and Macedonia, the Department of National Defence contracted SDV Logistics Canada Ltd to transport military assets, including 580 vehicles, 390 sea containers of equipment and three Canadian soldiers who were escorting the cargo.

SDV Logistics subcontracted Andromeda Navigation Co. of Montreal, which chartered a St Vincent-flagged ship, GTS Katie (owned by Annapolis, Maryland-based Third Ocean Marine Navigation Company), to move the cargo.

During the voyage, a dispute between the various contracting parties arose over payments due, and Third Ocean claimed that $288,000 remained outstanding from Andromeda. As a result of the dispute, Third Ocean ordered the Russian captain of the Katie, Vitaly Khlebnikov, not to enter Canadian waters.

Negotiations continued between the Canadian government and the shippers, however an ultimatum was given and the three contractors failed to reach an agreement by a certain deadline, according to Art Eggleton, then the Minister of National Defence.A diplomatic note was sent to the government of St Vincent and the Grenadines, where the ship was registered, who authorized Canadians to board the vessel.

On 30 July, the destroyer HMCS Athabaskan received orders to close with the Katie about 225 kilometres off Newfoundland, in international waters, and maintain visual contact with her. The following day, the frigate HMCS Montreal joined Athabaskan. At 1:45 pm on 3 August, fourteen sailors boarded Katie in a helicopter-borne assault from a Sea King, led by Captain Drew Robertson, during which the crew of the Katie offered no resistance.Captain Khlebnikov would later complain the boarding of the ship was “dangerous” and described the boarding as an “attack”, although Captain Robertson had observed that the Katie began erratic, evasive maneuvering after being warned of the imminent boarding.

Update on Athabaskan

I Spoke with Capt. Doug Keirstead of Marlant today.
He informed me a Engineering Assement team and a repair team were enroute to assess the ship, affect repairs and update the tow risk Assesment. Once the ship returns to Halifax, A more detailed survey will be completed.

Capt. Keirstead informed me that the priority is the safe return of the Vessel to Halifax. The Towing contract is the responsibility of Public Works, and they are evaluating options for the return tow.

Tugs Atlantic Elm and Fir In Sydney.

The Sydney NS port Authority is reporting Tugs Atlantic Elm and Fir In Sydney. Both were recently in Quebec, But may have been assigned to bring the Athabaskan back to Halifax..

 Stay Tuned.

UPDATE 04/01: Shipfax is reporting Ocean Tugs have headed for home. The Speculation is that Atlantic Towing Dispached their tugs based on the assumption that the contract would be re-tendered.
Photo (left) courtesy Sydney Port Authority via twitter.

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