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Last Updated: Tuesday, 8 July, 2003, 09:09 GMT 10:09 UK
HMS Nottingham refloated
HMS Nottingham
Sea trials and further repairs are still needed on HMS Nottingham
The Royal Navy warship HMS Nottingham has been refloated exactly a year after it nearly sank in the Pacific Ocean.

The destroyer hit rocks and ran aground near Lord Howe Island, 200 miles off the coast of Australia, on July 7, 2002.

Refloating began on Monday and was completed on Tuesday ending seven months in dry dock in Portsmouth, Hampshire.

Repairs, including mending the hull that was ripped open from bow to bridge on the well-charted Wolf Rock, cost 26m.

Fleet Support Limited (FSL), a contractor to the Royal Navy, said everything had gone according to plan.

"She is back in the water and everything is OK.

"She will be moved out of the dock some time in the next couple of weeks.

"There is still a lot of electrical work and systems work to be done and she doesn't get ready for her sea trials until next April," a spokesman added.

Major work would still need to be completed on the 3,560-tonne vessel before she returned to frontline duties.

The Ministry of Defence said earlier that it cost about 3m to bring HMS Nottingham back to the UK from Sydney, welded to the back of the Dutch-registered heavy lifting vessel MV Swan.

The accident gouged a hole in the bow of Type 42 destroyer as well as ripping a 100ft scar down the side of the vessel.

Miles of cable

The hull repair involved the removal and replacement of 100 tonnes of steelwork as well as the removal and repair of damaged machinery, including the ship's turbines.

Internally, a total of 15 miles of cable have been removed and will be replaced. The ship's sonar, which was destroyed in the accident, will also be replaced.

Commander Richard Farrington and three of his senior officers will appear before a tribunal later this year in relation to the grounding.



HMS Nottingham set for anniversary refloat
22 May 03  |  Hampshire/Dorset
Medals for HMS Nottingham crew
29 Apr 03  |  Nottinghamshire
Crippled warship's 3 million bill
13 Jan 03  |  UK News
Battered warship is refloated
13 Dec 02  |  England
Crippled warship to be refloated
09 Dec 02  |  UK News


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