Author Topic: Engine Room Fire in HMCS Protecteur  (Read 110488 times)

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Offline Navy_Pete

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Re: Engine Room Fire in HMCS Protecteur
« Reply #125 on: April 01, 2014, 15:45:10 »
The Kootenay fire is a good example; there were some major lessons learned implemented on DC procedures after that.

And generally in R&D and testing, you run things to breaking point to find the weaknesses.  I'm sure businesses do the same with products that don't work to get better the next time.

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Re: Engine Room Fire in HMCS Protecteur
« Reply #126 on: April 01, 2014, 18:37:57 »
So if I am correct that if a fire is large enough and hot enough to destroy the integrity of the steel in the hull, the ship is no longer seaworthy?

Infantard here so small sentences, short words please.......
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Re: Engine Room Fire in HMCS Protecteur
« Reply #127 on: April 01, 2014, 18:57:23 »
So if I am correct that if a fire is large enough and hot enough to destroy the integrity of the steel in the hull, the ship is no longer seaworthy?

Infantard here so small sentences, short words please.......

If the fire was hot enough, it'll melt steel decks. Any structural damage of that sort if extensive enough, ie affecting frames, watertight bulkheads or ship's side will certainly affect structural integrity. I would imagine the ship has already been surveyed to ensure seaworthiness for the trip back.
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Offline cupper

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Re: Engine Room Fire in HMCS Protecteur
« Reply #128 on: April 01, 2014, 19:07:17 »
So if I am correct that if a fire is large enough and hot enough to destroy the integrity of the steel in the hull, the ship is no longer seaworthy?

Infantard here so small sentences, short words please.......

Jim:

Speaking as a structural engineer who's field of study is designing buildings and other structures, and not ships, There are a couple of different considerations that can come into play here.

First and most simple is that the heat  of the fire itself can cause distortion to the framing and plates, and I believe a couple of mentions have been made about a bulge in the side around the location of the engine room. The integrity of the structure would be suspect at best. Members and connections would be over stressed, and would not stand up to the dynamic forces that come into play from normal operations, like waves pounding the side, bending of the hull from manouvering, etc.

But you can also get changes to the steel itself if the heat generated by the fire is hot enough. Like tempering a knife blade, you can make the steel more or less brittle depending on how you treat it. The steel in the hull could have gone through a change in temper, and become brittle, and would easily crack under normal loads, when it should be ductile to allow it to bend and deform under loads.


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Offline cupper

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Re: Engine Room Fire in HMCS Protecteur
« Reply #129 on: April 01, 2014, 19:18:24 »
The Kootenay fire is a good example; there were some major lessons learned implemented on DC procedures after that.

And generally in R&D and testing, you run things to breaking point to find the weaknesses.  I'm sure businesses do the same with products that don't work to get better the next time.

One of the biggest design changes was the replacement of the aluminum ladders with steel ladders. One of the most vivid images I saw from the display that was put together commemorating the 30th anniversary was of a ladder that had softened to the point that one of the engine room crew had tried to climb. The rungs deformed like stiff toffee under his feet.

And you have the Kootenay Hatch that was added to all ships as an alternate means of escape.
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Offline Navy_Pete

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Re: Engine Room Fire in HMCS Protecteur
« Reply #130 on: April 02, 2014, 19:33:33 »
There is a pretty interesting demonstration of that where someone took a sheet of aluminum, put it over a fire and let it heat up until it melted through.  Unlike steel, which glows, aluminum gives no visual indications that it has no structural strength left and simply melts.  There is some pretty vivid testimony (Falklands war?) where guys trying to climb up an aluminum ladder stepped right through it.

Jim, just to add a few more details, you have to bear in mind that the engine room is roughly the size of a school gymnasium with several decks, and the ship itself has numerous parts to its structure.  You can have localized damage and warping from fires, but the overall structure is still sound.  In layman's terms, if you think of a box cabinet, with a bunch of shelves, and dividers between them, you can have brackets break, or individual shelves fail, but the box itself is still good enough.  Maybe a better analogy is a kitchen fire, where you can have a lot of localized damage to the range hood, cupboards etc plus smoke damage elsewhere, but the house itself isn't in danger of falling over.

Part of the tow preps would be a very thorough structural inspection, as watertight integrity is their main concern.  The tow masters won't do it unless they feel its safe, so if repairs are needed, they'll get done.  No indication any are required though, and the things like that also tend to get mangled when filtered through PAs as well.  So some minor warping to local structure could easily change to more ominous sounding 'strucutral issues' by the time it gets to the MRLs.

Tow masters won't hook on until its safe anyway, and they'll require repairs to be done if needed.  They'll also do their best to find a window of good weather, and also have speed restrictions, so the PRO won't have a lot of loading on it.  That part should be good; but very unlikely the ship isn't beyond economical repair.

Offline Hamish Seggie

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Re: Engine Room Fire in HMCS Protecteur
« Reply #131 on: April 02, 2014, 20:09:32 »
Thanks very much!
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Re: Engine Room Fire in HMCS Protecteur
« Reply #132 on: April 03, 2014, 11:23:59 »
If she was newer she would be repaired, but given the her planned decommissioned date, the time and cost of repairs and the benefits of doing so will have to be weighed.

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Re: Engine Room Fire in HMCS Protecteur
« Reply #133 on: May 16, 2014, 19:12:00 »
The crack reporters at CBC noticed the 25000 tonne ship being towed out of a major port by a 3000 tonne ship! :salute:

HMCS Protecteur heading home under tow from U.S. navy tug
Canadian supply ship damaged by 2 fires in February departed Hawaii's Pearl Harbor on Thursday

http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/british-columbia/hmcs-protecteur-heading-home-under-tow-from-u-s-navy-tug-1.2645465

Quote

A Canadian navy warship that was badly damaged in U.S. waters by a massive fire at sea in February is on its way back to Canadian waters, under tow by a U.S. tug, CBC News has learned.

HMCS Protecteur departed Pearl Harbor on Thursday morning under tow from USNS Salvor, beginning a slow voyage across the North Pacific back to its home port of CFB Esquimalt near Victoria, B.C.

There are four Royal Canadian Navy sailors aboard Salvor for the sail home.

"She's making six knots right now, which is good," said navy spokesman Lt.-Cmdr LCdr Des James. "From our perspective, everything looks promising."

The trip under tow is expected to take as long as three weeks, depending on the weather, but it could be Protecteur's last trip.

Commissioned in 1969, the ship was due to be retired in 2017, but the damage aboard following two fires at sea over three days was so severe that it's likely repairs will be too expensive for the navy to consider for just a couple years of service.

"It's still too early to make those calls," said James.

"We have to wait 'til we get her alongside and then get on board and get a detailed damage assessment. That work will happen in the next weeks or months. There's still a long journey ahead."

About 20 crew suffered minor injuries — including dehydration, exhaustion and smoke inhalation — fighting the first of the two fires, an effort that lasted more than 11 hours.

The vessel was more than a day — and 600 kilometres — out of Pearl Harbor in the north Pacific in rough seas at the time the fire broke out.

Sailors were able to save the ship from sinking, but it nevertheless lost all power, including the ability to generate electricity to run communications gear and pumps to fight the blaze.

It took a week for the U.S. navy to tow the ship into Pearl Harbor after the incident.

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Re: Engine Room Fire in HMCS Protecteur
« Reply #135 on: May 18, 2014, 17:18:38 »
http://www.marinetraffic.com/en/ais/home/centerx:-158.1181/centery:21.20271/zoom:8/oldmmsi:316146000/olddate:lastknown#

HMCS PROTECTEUR
Position Recorded on:
2014-02-26 20:36:00 (UTC)

I don't think her position is being updated...   ;D

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Re: Engine Room Fire in HMCS Protecteur
« Reply #136 on: May 18, 2014, 21:01:37 »
Nope.....I saw that, but figured they might have flashed up their AIS while under tow on the way back home.....guess not!
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Re: Engine Room Fire in HMCS Protecteur
« Reply #137 on: May 19, 2014, 07:47:07 »
It's an unmanned tow; there's no power aboard PRO for AIS to operate.  Unless the tug can update PRO's data, that is...I don't know enough about the setup of AIS to know if that's possible.

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Re: Engine Room Fire in HMCS Protecteur
« Reply #138 on: May 19, 2014, 07:54:43 »
It's an unmanned tow; there's no power aboard PRO for AIS to operate.  Unless the tug can update PRO's data, that is...I don't know enough about the setup of AIS to know if that's possible.


Am I reading too much into "unmanned tow" or has the RCN already decided that PRO is beyond economical repair? I have some trouble imagining that one would not want to keep a small maintenance team on board even for a very long, very slow tow, if the ships is to be repaired and return to service.
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Re: Engine Room Fire in HMCS Protecteur
« Reply #139 on: May 19, 2014, 08:11:21 »

Am I reading too much into "unmanned tow" or has the RCN already decided that PRO is beyond economical repair? I have some trouble imagining that one would not want to keep a small maintenance team on board even for a very long, very slow tow, if the ships is to be repaired and return to service.

Unmanned tows are pretty standard from a safety standpoint, the RCN does them all the time. No need to run a generator and there is only four RCN personnel on the US Navy tug. I would imagine the Protecteur had everything shutdown, UPS's disconnected, no fuel or ammo on board etc, the fire risk on that ship is very low.
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Re: Engine Room Fire in HMCS Protecteur
« Reply #140 on: May 19, 2014, 08:15:26 »


Thanks, Chief.
It is ill that men should kill one another in seditions, tumults and wars; but it is worse to bring nations to such misery, weakness and baseness
as to have neither strength nor courage to contend for anything; to have nothing left worth defending and to give the name of peace to desolation.
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Offline Good2Golf

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Re: Engine Room Fire in HMCS Protecteur
« Reply #141 on: May 19, 2014, 09:33:17 »
Info from USNS Salvor's (T-ARS 52) AIS: HMCS Protecteur's position while under tow.

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Re: Engine Room Fire in HMCS Protecteur
« Reply #142 on: May 19, 2014, 10:05:01 »
Info from USNS Salvor's (T-ARS 52) AIS: HMCS Protecteur's position while under tow.

That's from 4 days ago, looks like they turned off their AIS as well.
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Offline Good2Golf

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Re: Engine Room Fire in HMCS Protecteur
« Reply #143 on: May 19, 2014, 10:08:50 »
That's from 4 days ago, looks like they turned off their AIS as well.

True, although I didn't know if that was for operational reasons or just because it may have been irregularly updated.  Interestingly, many of MSC's support vessels seem to run AIS when alongside or administratively underway, but then don't transmit at other times.

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Re: Engine Room Fire in HMCS Protecteur
« Reply #144 on: May 19, 2014, 10:22:58 »
True, although I didn't know if that was for operational reasons or just because it may have been irregularly updated.  Interestingly, many of MSC's support vessels seem to run AIS when alongside or administratively underway, but then don't transmit at other times.

The AIS is based on VHF and antenna height so you should not see them 20 or 30 miles away from land. I don't think there is a satellite based AIS.
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Offline Navy_Pete

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Re: Engine Room Fire in HMCS Protecteur
« Reply #145 on: May 19, 2014, 15:11:59 »
Unmanned tows are pretty standard from a safety standpoint, the RCN does them all the time. No need to run a generator and there is only four RCN personnel on the US Navy tug. I would imagine the Protecteur had everything shutdown, UPS's disconnected, no fuel or ammo on board etc, the fire risk on that ship is very low.

There was also a lot of work done on the flood side; all the hull valves (inlets for pumps etc) were locked shut and all the watertight doors etc are dogged shut, with a remote flood detection system installed with an strobe attached on the mast for a visual indication.

There were some other preps but those were the big ones.  If you are curious the USN salvage manuals are avail on their site; http://www.supsalv.org/00c2_publications.asp?destPage=00c2

I think we may just adopt their manual as our standard, it's pretty excellent.

For tows, you either go with everything but engines flashed up or dead ship.  Unless you are just going across the harbour or some other short distance, doesn't really make a lot of sense to tow with people onboard otherwise, as it's easier to sail.

As an aside, our ships don't normally transmit on AIS; we generally go on 'receive only'.  The signal can also get piggybacked on the standard nav radar, so you can easily pick ships up 60-100 miles away from their broadcast (twice the detection range, as it doesn't have to go and come back to the antennae)

edit: here's some info on the 'USNS ship, can't really call it a 'tug boat', it's pretty bad a$$;

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/USNS_Salvor_%28T-ARS-52%29
« Last Edit: May 19, 2014, 15:15:11 by Navy_Pete »

Offline Good2Golf

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Re: Engine Room Fire in HMCS Protecteur
« Reply #146 on: May 19, 2014, 16:16:33 »
Salvor is certainly a very capable vessel. I found it interesting, though, that she was running 4 x Cat D399s for prime power...the Cat 3600s were well into production when Salvor was first commissioned. 

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Re: Engine Room Fire in HMCS Protecteur
« Reply #147 on: May 19, 2014, 21:16:40 »
CAT classifies the 3600 as Auxiliary Engines vice the D399 as a Propulsion Engine...maybe that was the reason?
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Offline Baz

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Re: Engine Room Fire in HMCS Protecteur
« Reply #148 on: May 19, 2014, 22:35:01 »
The AIS is based on VHF and antenna height so you should not see them 20 or 30 miles away from land. I don't think there is a satellite based AIS.

There is, a few of them; one of the best is ExactEarth, a Canadian company:
http://www.exactearth.com/
MarineTraffic is quite spotty as its users who provide the data (hey don't buy it, so they certainly couldn't afford sat coverage):
http://www.marinetraffic.com/en/p/expand-coverage

There is also Long Range Identification and Tracking (LRIT, google it) which is merchant vessel sat comms to home flag, then shared government to government as agreed.

By the way, since AIS is supposed to be for safety primarily (not to help the Navy track stuff) the IMO doesn't like sites like MarineTraffic:
Quote
Maritime security - AIS ship data

At its79th session in December 2004, the Maritime Safety Committee (MSC) agreed that, in relation to the issue of freely available automatic information system (AIS)-generated ship data on the world-wide web, the publication on the world-wide web or elsewhere of AIS data transmitted by ships could be detrimental to the safety and security of ships and port facilities and was undermining the efforts of the Organization and its Member States to enhance the safety of navigation and security in the international maritime transport sector.

The Committee condemned the regrettable publication on the world-wide web, or elsewhere, of AIS data transmitted by ships and urged Member Governments, subject to the provisions of their national laws, to discourage those who make available AIS data to others for publication on the world-wide web, or elsewhere from doing so.

In addition, the Committee condemned those who irresponsibly publish AIS data transmitted by ships on the world-wide web, or elsewhere, particularly if they offer services to the shipping and port industries.
http://www.imo.org/OurWork/Safety/Navigation/Pages/AIS.aspx

AIS isn't piggybacked on radar, its VHF-FM (around 162MHz) and radar is much higher; good bridge systems will display them together but they are separate signals.  Although both are line of site, AIS, being lower freq, sometimes ducts (I've seen 300nm+ on a good airborne receiver at 400ft), but the range over some radars is due to reflectivity primarily.

Since its a self synching network, with no control stations, some interesting tricks are required for sat AIS due to collisions; all the ships the sat can see can't see each other, which creates collisions.

Since a lot of ships have integrated AIS and radar displays, and some aircraft, not having your AIS on can be a dead giveaway to who you are, especially if your wasting fuel going in circles like the Navy tends to do; "when in danger, when in doubt, steam in circles, scream and shout."  AIS won't identify people who have it off or are spoofing it, but it makes them stand out on your plot!
« Last Edit: May 19, 2014, 22:38:26 by Baz »

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Re: Engine Room Fire in HMCS Protecteur
« Reply #149 on: May 19, 2014, 22:53:08 »
[slight OT]
CAT classifies the 3600 as Auxiliary Engines vice the D399 as a Propulsion Engine...maybe that was the reason?

Strange, Cat shows 3612s and 3616 as (legacy) propulsion engines here

I got my scales off a bit, though...the 3600 is significantly larger than a D399...a 3500 was more a replacement for the D399.

[/OT]

So at 6.5 its, there's another two weeks or so to get to Naden?